Man sentenced to seven months for assaults, breaching orders

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PICTOU – A Thorburn man has been sentenced to seven months and 11 days in prison after pleading guilty to multiple charges that involve breaching court orders, assaults and entering the home of an ex-girlfriend. 

Marcus Devin English was charged with two counts of assault, damaging a vehicle and unlawfully entering a dwelling house on Aug. 16, 2012, as well as two breaches of court orders, in August and September 2012.

He also pleaded guilty to new charges of driving while impaired in December 2012 as well as breaches in November 2012 and January.

Crown attorney Jody McNeill told the court that English was arrested Aug. 16 after Stellarton police received a phone call from someone saying they hear a vehicle being smashed in their neighbourhood.

When officers arrived at the residence around 4:30 a.m., a woman said her ex-boyfriend had walked into her home uninvited, assaulted her male friend several times by punching him and then left the home. He returned a short time later when the woman and her man were sitting in a vehicle in the driveway.

McNeill said English smashed the car’s windshield and jumped on the hood. He was arrested and released on a court undertaking to keep the peace and to stay away from alcohol and his ex-girlfriend.

However, the court was told that English contacted the woman after his arrest through texts and phone calls in addition to showing up at her home.

He was also charged with impaired driving on Dec. 29 after pulling into a parking lot at the East River Plaza behind a police vehicle. Again, he was released on a court order to keep the peace and stay away from alcohol, but was arrested once more on Jan. 7, when he caused a disturbance at a local church. 

McNeill said English has both alcohol problems and mental health issues that involve attention deficit and hyperactivity. He has also suffered from depression in the past and people have described him as reckless.

Defence lawyer Hector MacIsaac said his client has substance abuse problems and after the break-up with his girlfriend, things spiralled out of control.

However, he said, his client has benefited from being in custody for the past 50 days awaiting sentencing and appears to have a different outlook on reality.

“I really learned a lot about who I don’t want to become,” English told Atwood during his sentencing. “I reacted badly to bad situations.”

Judge Del Atwood said Thursday that a 90-day intermittent sentenced recommended by the defence doesn’t accomplish the denunciation and deterrence need for such serious offences.

English received the seven-month jail sentence for the unlawful entry into a dwelling house, assaults and breaches and an additional 11 days for the impaired driving. He is also prohibited from driving a vehicle for 12 months and 11 days and must pay $600 in victim surcharge fines. Following his time in prison, he must also serve nine months’ probation. 

Geographic location: Stellarton, East River Plaza

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