Judge hopes guilty pleas will allow family to move forward in their healing journey
Warning: This story may be disturbing to some readers.
A Vancouver man will spend the next six years in prison for sexually abusing his two children, starting when the girls were in Grade 1 or younger.
The uncle, whose name is covered by a publication ban to protect the identities of the victims, pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual interference with a person under 16 years, Crown prosecutor Jacinta Lawton told Vancouver Provincial Court Judge Joseph Galati.
“The sexual abuse of both children was highly invasive,” Lawton said.
The 57-year-old had been charged with a third count of sexual interference as well as invitation to sexual touching but those charges were stayed.
Galati noted the guilty pleas spared the victims — now in their teens — from the “torturous ordeal of having to testify.”
Galati said, while the crimes likely traumatized the girls, the fact that the uncle assaulted them in his home where they were living with their mother was also their home.
They were assaulted even in their own beds, Galati heard.
The judge called that a breach of trust, noting children should feel secure in their own homes and beds.
“There were multiple occasions of sexual interference,” Galati said.
At one point, he asked one of the girls if she liked what he was doing.
“She said ‘no,’” Lawton said, noting the girl remembered seeing a favorite stuffed toy in the room as she was being assaulted.
The judge said he had no hesitation in believing “both of the victims would have suffered significant psychological and emotional harm.” Broken down, the man received 42 months on one count and 30 on the second with time to be served consecutively.
“The guilty plea is a reflection of his remorse,” Galati said. “I accept that it’s true remorse.”
The judge said he hoped the guilty pleas would allow the family to move forward in their healing.