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Sexual assault victim 'brutally traumatized'

Not only did Kevin Roy Gladue disfigure an O’Chiese woman when he broke her jaw, his actions endangered her life as she ran away and became lost in the woods for 12 days.

The woman, who can’t be identified because of a publication ban, was trying to get away from Gladue who had attempted to sexually assault her.

Gladue, 38, was convicted last Friday of aggravated sexual assault. On Tuesday, Crown and defence counsel argued over how long Gladue will spend in prison.

The Crown is seeking a sentence of five to eight years, with six-and-a-half being their preferred sentence. Defence counsel Jason Snider suggested a sentence of two to four years, with two-and-a-half being his preferred sentence.

The woman did not want to read her victim impact statement in open court, but asked Crown Prosecutor Ann MacDonald if she would.

“I thought my life was going to end and I’d never see my family again,” said MacDonald from the woman’s statement.

“I was and am brutally traumatized.”

The woman spent 12 days in the woods near the north end of the O’Chiese Reserve starting from her disappearance on July 14, 2013 to when she was found on July 26, 2013. In that time she had survived on stream and river water and berries. During her survival in the wilderness she lost her shoes.

She was found about 10 km from where she was last seen, having crossed the Baptiste River along the way. When she was found she had lost a significant amount of weight, her broken jaw was infected, she had blisters on her feet, a rash on her torso and exposure after almost two weeks of being lost in the wilderness.

It all started when Gladue, the woman and four others were off-roading in northern O’Chiese and their truck became stuck. Four people went for held. Gladue and the woman stayed behind. While the woman slept, she awoke to Gladue pulling off her pants, exposing her buttocks.

She scrambled out of the truck and started to walk away from Gladue, telling him to stop. He followed and struck the woman in the face with a stick. This fractured her jaw in two places, detaching the lower mandible. She ran into the woods to escape and became lost.

Gladue surrendered himself into custody on Monday and appeared in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench wearing blue prison coveralls.

MacDonald called it an unprovoked, vicious attack that only stopped when the woman ran away.

Snider pointed out the sex assault was minor and said the two components of the incident were separate actions.

Gladue testified at trial he did not assault the woman, saying he left when his then-wife picked him up. Snider said Gladue continues to deny he committed the offence.

Justice Kirk Sisson adjourned sentencing to Feb. 25 in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench, to allow him to review the numerous cases presented by both Crown and defence.

mcrawford@reddeeradvocate.com

 
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