Crown wants man jailed at least four years for pointing fake gun at guard

A Crown prosecutor argued for a stiff jail sentence for a man convicted of pointing an imitation gun at a Red Deer security guard, saying the victim is still “terrorized” because she thought the handgun was real.

A Crown prosecutor argued for a stiff jail sentence for a man convicted of pointing an imitation gun at a Red Deer security guard, saying the victim is still “terrorized” because she thought the handgun was real.

“On this day, I feared for my life,” read Crown Maurice Collard, from a written victim impact statement from store security officer Crystal Howse.

Howse had what looked like a firearm pointed at her head on Oct. 8, after she tried to stop a man from shoplifting bedding materials from The Bay.

Brett Christopher Morgan, 35, was found guilty in Red Deer provincial court in December of possession of property under $5,000, robbery and using an imitation firearm while committing an indictable offence.

At his pre-sentencing hearing on Thursday, Collard told Judge Dave Plosz that there should be no legal distinction between when a victim sees a gun pointed at her face and when the firearm turns out to be an imitation.

The trauma experienced in the moment is real, he added. “She thought her life could end that day.”

Collard asked for a jail sentence of four to five-and-a-half years for Morgan, adding the offender’s record shows a pattern of escalating aggression. “Past prison time has not changed him.”

But defence lawyer Patty MacNaughton disagreed that her client was becoming more violent, saying his history does not show this.

She said the shoplifting incident was not the same as someone robbing a convenience store with a firearm.

Morgan was described as being addicted to drugs and petty theft. Referring to a Reader’s Digest article provided by her client, MacNaughton said, “He thinks he’s a certain type of kleptomaniac with a compulsion to steal.”

She asked the judge for a jail sentence of two years less a day, so her client could go to a provincial jail instead of a federal penitentiary.

While Morgan was also found guilty of driving while disqualified, MacNaughton said the punishment for this should be served concurrently, since it all happened on the same day as part of the same incident.

Morgan later told Plosz “Yes, I feel sorry for Ms. Howse and what I did that day.”

While he maintained his innocence, he said at Thursday’s hearing that he instinctively reacted because Howse grabbed him. “All I wanted to do was to get away. . . .”

Plosz asked Morgan, who remains in custody, to return to court on Feb. 27 for sentencing.

lmichelin@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

Man from Olds killed in collision near Sundre

A 39-year-old man from Olds was killed in a collision near Sundre… Continue reading

Tips to keep crime at bay this Christmas

’Tis the season for joy and celebration, but the Christmas season can… Continue reading

Olympic ski run designer creates upgrades at Canyon Ski Resort

Jeff Ihaksi says free-style and alpine ski venues are Canada Winter Games-worthy

Updated: Collision expert backs version of crash of driver accused of manslaughter

Daniel Newsham accused of manslaughter in fatal 2016 collision

WATCH: More than 100 protest UN migration pact, carbon tax in Red Deer

Chants of “Trudeau must go” echoed through the streets of downtown Red… Continue reading

Tkachuk’s goal in 3rd gives Flames 2-1 win over Wild

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Matthew Tkachuk scored the go-ahead goal midway through… Continue reading

Women use scent to lure wolf-dog that ran away from Calgary airport

EDMONTON — A woman from Alberta is thanking an unconventional strategy for… Continue reading

Suspect in Alberta, Saskatchewan bank robberies to get mental assessment

MEDICINE HAT, Alta. — A former Winnipeg broadcaster and journalism instructor accused… Continue reading

Trudeau to make it harder for future PM to reverse Senate reforms

OTTAWA — Justin Trudeau says his government hopes to make legal changes… Continue reading

No winning ticket for Friday night’s $60 million Lotto Max jackpot

TORONTO — There was no winning ticket for the $60 million jackpot… Continue reading

All evacuation orders lifted in deadly California wildfire

PARADISE, Calif. — All evacuation orders have been lifted in Paradise more… Continue reading

All aflutter about our feathered friends

Christmas Bird Count will be held Dec. 23

Baylor ties pervade rape case that sparked uproar

DALLAS — The Texas judge who approved a plea deal allowing a… Continue reading

Most Read