Arson sentencing delayed

Sentencing has been delayed until mid-October for a Red Deer man who has admitted to burning a vehicle alleged to have been involved in a fatal collision.

Sentencing has been delayed until mid-October for a Red Deer man who has admitted to burning a vehicle alleged to have been involved in a fatal collision.

Penhold resident Trystan Sorensen, 18, died at the side of Hwy 592 west of Penhold on May 20 after being struck by a passing motorist, who then drove off.

Police allege that the 2003 Dodge SUV, reported stolen the next day, was later found in a field where it had been doused in diesel fuel and set on fire.

Crown prosecutor Katie Clarey alleged in Red Deer provincial court on Tuesday that vehicle owner Jessica Masyk of Innisfail was driving the SUV at the time of the collision, fled the scene and later enlisted the help of two men.

Steven “Frenchy” Lagace, 29, pleaded guilty to a single count of arson on Tuesday, admitting to driving the vehicle out to the field where it was found, hitting two mailboxes along the way, and then striking it numerous times with a sledge hammer before setting it on fire.

Represented by defence counsel Daniel Wilson, Lagace pleaded guilty before Judge Gordon Deck to a number of unrelated offences as well, including being unlawfully at large while on parole, possessing a stolen vehicle, possession of a drugs including cocaine, crystal methamphetamine and heroin, and possession of a prohibited weapon — a set of brass knuckles.

Lagace was arrested in Red Deer on June 16 by RCMP who recognized him while investigating a different suspect on a charge of assault.

Clarey said Lagace ran from a residence and jumped into a stolen pickup truck, and that he was trying to drive away when one of the officers fired a round at the vehicle.

Sentencing on all charges was adjourned after Clarey submitted a set of victim impact statements written by members of Sorensen’s family.

The writers had asked to read their statements into the record during sentencing, but were not present for court on Tuesday, except for Sorensen’s mother, Amy Sorensen.

Deck adjourned sentencing for two weeks so she and the others would have a chance to attend the hearing and read their statements.

Now in remand, Lagace returns for sentencing on Oct. 14.

Masyk, also in custody, has not entered a plea on her charges, including leaving the scene of an injury collision and making a false statement to police.

Masyk also faces charges laid in mid-August after an incident in Highland Green, during which police vehicles were rammed while RCMP were attempting to arrest two people suspected of attempting to break into vehicles in the area.

Masyk returns to court on Oct. 17.

Logan Graham, also charged in connection with the arson of Masyk’s vehicle, is to enter his plea on Oct. 7.

bkossowan@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

WATCH: Red Deer teacher engages students with “cool” science experiments

On Thursday, he made fire dance to the beat of the music

Province purchases land for new Red Deer courthouse

Construction to begin in the fall of 2019

Parking costs in Red Deer are going up — so are parking tickets

City council raises parking rates by 25 per cent starting July 1

WATCH: Alberta Party leadership candidates in Red Deer

Three people vying to be the leader of the Alberta Party were… Continue reading

In photos: Get ready for Western Canadian Championships

Haywood NorAm Western Canadian Championships and Peavey Mart Alberta Cup 5/6 start… Continue reading

WATCH: Red Deer city council debates cost-savings versus quality of life

Majority of councillors decide certain services are worth preserving

Got milk? Highway reopened near Millet

A southbound truck hauling milk and cartons collided with a bridge

Stettler’s newest residents overcame fear, bloodshed to come here

Daniel Kwizera, Diane Mukasine and kids now permanent residents

Giddy up: Red Deer to host Canadian Finals Rodeo in 2018

The CFR is expected to bring $20-30 million annually to Red Deer and region

Ice dancers Virtue and Moir to carry flag at Pyeongchang Olympics

Not since Kurt Browning at the 1994 Lillehammer Games has a figure… Continue reading

Beer Canada calls on feds to axe increasing beer tax as consumption trends down

OTTAWA — A trade association for Canada’s beer industry wants the federal… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month