When B.C. Supreme Court Justice George Macintosh said that the jury had decided that David Pickton’s actions were at the “modest end” and when the victim was awarded $45,000 in damages in June instead of the one million dollars in damages she was seeking, or any costs, I shook my head and said to myself, “They wonder why victims do not come forward when assaulted.” With everything else the victim is put through on the stand by the accused lawyer, add to that the real possibility of the victim having to pay their costs out of their own pocket even though the accused is found guilty as charged with sexual assaulting them, or attempting to sexual assault them, would you be willing to bring that kind of financial debt on yourself in order to get justice? Could the average Canadian be able to afford taking on that kind of financial burden if they were sexually assaulted, or an attempt was made to sexually assault them? If the answer is no then a lot of rapists are getting off and will continue to get off because victims cannot afford financially to seek the justice they deserve and so rapist get off with slaps on the wrists and are encouraged to rape again.
In 2015 Canadians should be ashamed that we live in a society that treats the victims of sexual predators like they are the criminals. Can anyone out there please tell me what it is to be modestly sexually assaulted and how a sitting Canadian Supreme Court Justice could say such a thing in 2015?
I believe that the ugly word rape needs to go back into the charge and the words sexual assault be taken back out because,
- The removal of the word rape from the charge to describe the crime of someone attempting, or succeeding in forcing their unwanted sexual activity on another human being has somehow made the crime of rape sound not as bad a violation of another human being as it should and used to.
- Canadian politicians, Canadian lawyers, Canadian judges and Canadians who sit on juries have decided that there are three different categories when it comes to the charge of sexual assault. (Rape, serious sexual assault and not so serious sexual assault)
That a member of the Canadian bar like Andrew Morrison legal council for David Pickton could publicly go on record as making statements to the press such as,
- His client should not have to pay any more cash, but instead be awarded costs himself.
- “If a slap on the rear end can be a sexual assault, then there is nothing inconsistent with acknowledging his conviction for a sexual assault, but pleading that if he didn’t touch the genitalia, he didn’t threaten rape.”
Amazingly the fact that David Pickton was convicted more than two decades ago for the 1991 attack on a woman at a construction site in Burnaby, B.C for which Pickton was fined $1,000 and handed one year’s probation, did not seem to weigh to heavily on the jury and they showed their lack of interest in this guys attitude towards women in general, in their awarding of such a low amount of damages in this case. It would appear that in British Columbia they still do not take the crime of sexual assault seriously.
By reserving his decision until Friday and making the statement that he made, I believe that B.C. Supreme Court Justice George Macintosh sent a clear message to Canadian politicians, ordinary Canadians, would be perpetrators considering to commit this type of crime, to David Pickton and most importantly to David Pickton’s victim and future victims, that he (B.C. Supreme Court Justice George Macintosh ) sees sexual assault as a crime to be viewed as less than rape, or attempted rape. This is the message I got when I read online that B.C. Supreme Court Justice George Macintosh said, “Pickton either slapped her on the ass, or allegedly felt her genitals through her jeans and threatened to rape and kill her.” “He’s an unorthodox man, there’s absolutely no doubt about that. He’s rough and he’s tough and he certainly behaves in ways that probably most of us are not enamoured of,” but there is such a spectrum of dispute as to what happened in the trailer.”
I know what it is to be sexually assaulted, because I was and let me assure you that there is nothing “Modest” about it. It is the most hurtful, personal violations a person can experience and there is no amount of money, or psychological therapy that will ever let the victim forget what happened to them. Victims of sexual assault need to know not only that they will be believed if they decide to come forward and lay charges, but that once the evidence has been presented in a court of law that it will be taken seriously and that they stand a chance a seeing justice done. I do not think that this is the case when the convicted perpetrator of the crime’s lawyer says stuff like this, he thinks that his client should be seeking costs instead of the victim, when he speaks to the fact that the victim is seeking legal costs on top of other monies awarded her at the trials end.
Finally the decision of the B.C. Supreme Court Justice George Macintosh and the way he put makes it sound as if he is saying that if you are a victim of a rape attempt, or have been raped, the best solution for everyone is for you the victim to just act like the whore that the justice system will make you out to be anyway and save yourself a lot of disappointment and pain. It is my opinion that he also suggests that you the victim should try to avoid causing a financial burden for both you and the legal system, by accepting whatever cash settlement offered to you by the person who violated you.
- B.C. Supreme Court Justice George Macintosh said, “Frankly, on any rational assessment, her dealings with Mr. Pickton in 1991 were only a small event by comparison with the miseries she faced in many other aspects of her life,” he said Friday. “She therefore, at trial, had an insurmountable task of proving causation for her claim, and the jury rightly, in my view, largely rejected her claim.”
- Pickton’s lawyer said his client is pleased with the outcome. “She should have accepted the reasonable offer to settle that Mr. Pickton made, so everyone could have avoided the trial and the judicial resources it consumed,” Andrew Morrison said.
- Jurors awarded the woman $45,000, including $20,000 in punitive damages, but that did not include any money for future loss of earnings.
- Macintosh said the woman will only be awarded costs incurred up until Pickton made the settlement offer, about six weeks before trial.
- The judge also awarded half the costs of an accountant who testified about the woman’s loss of income since the assault.
- Pickton must pay the woman’s legal costs for the most recent court action, as well as his own, the judge said in also not awarding any costs to Pickton.
Is any surprise that Jason Gratl the lawyer for the victim said, “The woman is “obviously disappointed” with the outcome?” As a person who knows first hand how difficult it is to deal with the pain, the humiliation and the anger, I can only suffer along with this victim. This victim can never be made whole, or feel truly safe, as no victim who has been sexually assaulted will ever be whole or feel truly safe ever again, but that does not mean that we as a society should not attempt to cover the cost of the help they will need to find some sort of comfort and normalcy in their life going forward. In my opinion the law and the entire justice system have failed this victim as they do in most cases of this sort. I am ashamed that in Canada, in this day and age that a judge, defense lawyer and jurors chose to trivialize her pain and failed to understand what it was that they asked of her when they said she should have settled with an already convicted sexual offender.