Penticton and South Okanagan
Submissions in aggravated assault case
Oct 1, 2013 / 5:56 pm
Penticton Judge Gregory Koturbash heard submissions in an aggravated assault case in Penticton on Tuesday,
Marcus Sheena, 28, is facing charges including aggravated assault, assault with a weapon and assault causing bodily harm, stemming from an incident on Sept. 17, 2011 in Penticton.
According to crown counsel John Swanson, two men were sitting outside the back of a garage on Nelson Avenue on that date, when they were approached by Sheena and a female companion.
Sheena asked if he could have a cigarette. He put it in his mouth backwards, and when he tried to light it, it fell to the ground.
He then walked into the garage, grabbed a hammer and hit one of the men in the stomach.
When he did so, the other man tried to grab him. The two wrestled and the man was stabbed in the neck.
It was an extremely serious stab wound, nearly severing the man's jugular vein. So serious, said Swanson, that a surgeon at the hospital where the man was treated said it was quite fortunate he wasn't killed.
When the other man, who was hit with the hammer, tried to assist the man who was stabbed. He was grabbed from behind by the female, who choked him. He fell down and when he woke up, he went back to the house to get help.
The man who was stabbed fled to the local IGA and called police.
By then, Sheena and the woman had left the scene. When police officers arrived, they seized the cigarette and sent it in for DNA analysis.
A warrant was obtained and Sheena has been in custody since February, 2012.
Because of the nature of this assault and Sheena's lengthy past criminal record, including other assaults with a weapon, Swanson recommended he get four years, less time served.
Defense lawyer Renzo D. Caron argued his client's upbringing could only be described as traumatic.
He was introduced to alcohol at age 5 or 6 and by age 18 was addicted to crack cocaine.
He also spent his life in and out of foster care.
His life now is more stable. He has a common law partner and two daughters, as well as a strong support system of other relatives, many of whom were in court Tuesday.
He has further shown a willingness to engage in programs that would lead to rehabilitation and is interested in engaging in his aboriginal culture, said Caron.
Because of this willingness to turn his life around, Caron asked the judge that it not be too big of a leap to consider Sheena's release.
Speaking in his own defence, Sheena said he has been in custody 25 months, the longest time he has ever been in jail.
As a result, he said he has had time to do a lot of thinking. He has started talking to a psychologist, graduated and reached out to his family.
In the future, he hopes to move to Abbotsford and take a life skills program to better himself. He also wants to be there for his two daughters, who are currently in government care.
"That is something I don't take lightly," he said. "I grew up in foster homes, and I know how it is."
After Sheena spoke, Koturbash asked if he was under the influence of alcohol or drugs when the incident took place.
Sheena replied that he was drunk and high on other drugs, after recently dealing with a bad situation involving his children.
"A lot of what I have done has been alcohol related," he said. "I don't like it. I want to quit drinking."
The judge said given the seriousness of the case, he needed time to consider the submissions. He put the matter over, with the hope of handing down a sentence Wednesday afternoon.
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