Man gets nine-year prison term

A Red Deer man found guilty of robbing a TD Canada Trust bank using bear spray early last fall received a nine-year prison sentence in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench on Thursday.

A Red Deer man found guilty of robbing a TD Canada Trust bank using bear spray early last fall received a nine-year prison sentence in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench on Thursday.

On Wednesday, a jury found Dustin Aaron Clark, 36, guilty of robbery, using a disguise with the intention of committing an offence, using a weapon dangerous to the public and two counts of assault with a weapon.

He was found not guilty of theft under $5,000.

Justice Monica Bast agreed with Crown prosecutor Jason Snider that Clark qualified for delayed parole eligibility due to his lengthy criminal record, so he must serve half of his sentence before he can be released on full parole.

Charges stem from an incident at 3 p.m. on Sept. 23, 2013, when a man entered the Village Mall TD Canada Trust in Red Deer and used bear spray to rob the bank.

Bast said both the tellers, an innocent bystander outside, and another man who chased Clark suffered painful symptoms from the bear spray.

Snider was seeking a nine-to-10-year prison sentence and defence lawyer Norman Clair sought a seven-to-eight-year sentence.

During his opportunity to speak to the court prior to sentencing, Clark insisted that he didn’t do the crime, regretted requesting a jury trial, and asked Bast for a little mercy.

“I didn’t do anything. I’m sticking to my guns on this one,” said Clark.

Clark said he was an orphan, raised in group homes and foster care, and turned to petty crime to survive.

“It’s been a web I can’t get out of,” he said.

Clark has a 21-year record of over 50 convictions.

Bast said she considered several aggravating factors in reaching her decision, including the use of a weapon, the risk of exposing bank customers to bear spray, wearing a disguise, and fleeing the scene and committing further crimes.

Clark was given credit for 298 days of pre-trial custody, which will reduce the amount of time he has left to serve.

A lifetime weapons prohibition was also imposed on Clark and an order was made for a DNA sample.

Just Posted

These blues will get you dancing: The Overdue Blues Band performs in Red Deer Saturday

Calgary’s Brother Ray Lemelin Band is also on Elks Lodge bill

Tree planting volunteers needed at Ellis Bird Farm

Arbour Day activities at Ellis Bird Farm

Third pot store to open in May in Red Deer

Red Deerians will soon have a third pot store to patronize. Fire… Continue reading

Gardening: Time and effort key to buying garden plants

Greenhouses, garden centers and box stores are set to start selling bedding… Continue reading

Montreal native Nicholas Latifi off to solid start on Formula 2 race circuit

Practice makes perfect for Canadian Nicholas Latifi. The 23-year-old Montreal auto racer… Continue reading

Bruins victory over Leafs ensures an American team will hoist the Stanley Cup

TORONTO — Many NHL players were either not yet born or too… Continue reading

Swole, buzzy, among new words in Merriam-Webster dictionary

BOSTON — Get swole, prepare a bug-out bag, grab a go-cup and… Continue reading

Garner graces cover of People’s annual ‘Beautiful Issue’

NEW YORK — Jennifer Garner graces the front of this year’s “Beautiful… Continue reading

Updated: Joshua Arthur Sanford has been found, says RCMP

37-year-old Ponoka man last seen on Tuesday morning

Inspired by a galaxy far, far away, these ‘Star Wars’ mementos could be yours forever

CHICAGO —The stuff of “Star Wars” —and there is unfortunately no better… Continue reading

Shoppers Drug Mart launches second online medical pot portal in Alberta

TORONTO — Medical cannabis users in Alberta can now get their therapeutic… Continue reading

Most Read