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Man in St. Albert court sentenced to 45 days for domestic assault

Man assaulted girlfriend so badly her eye swelled shut, threatened to "kick her head in"
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Alberta’s new “zero tolerance for crime” policies may strain court resources in St. Albert. FILE/Photo

A man who appeared in St. Albert court pleaded guilty on Monday to assaulting his girlfriend so badly that her eye swelled shut and threatening to kick the victim's head in.

Jason Jowett was charged with assault causing bodily harm and uttering threats. He was sentenced to 45 days in jail and 12 months probation.

On May 3, St. Albert RCMP responded to a call near of a LeClair Way and Sir Winston Churchill Avenue of a woman in distress.

They found the woman with bloodshot eyes and a bruised cheek. She was covered in leaves, crying and hyperventilating.

The woman said that she and Jowett got into an argument where Jowett was living when Jowett punched and elbowed her, causing injuries to her face.

She fought Jowett off and “ran for her life” when a good Samaritan found her and called police.

Police searched for Jowett but could not find him.

On May 18, Jowett called the woman and threatened to “kick her head in” if he found her. He accused the woman of cheating on him.

Defence counsel Robert Wachowich asked for 30 days on the assault and 15 for uttering threats.

Jowett’s time in the Edmonton Remand Centre, where he has been held since June 8, had convinced him to leave behind a lifestyle of abusing drugs and alcohol, said defence counsel Robert Wachowich, who argued for 30 days on the assault and 15 days for uttering threats.

Jowett had attempted to overcome his drug and alcohol problems in the past, but Alberta Hospital turned him away when he sought treatment.

Both Jowett and his girlfriend struggled with substance abuse, Wachowich said.

Crown prosecutor Crystal Robertson argued for a 60-day sentence: 30 days for the assault and 30 days for uttering threats.

She said the longer sentence was appropriate because of the visible injuries to the woman’s face, the nature of the Jowett’s threats and because the courts need to take a position of denunciation and deterrence when it comes to intimate partner violence.

Justice Harry Bridges agreed that Wachowich’s suggestion was fair and sentenced Jowett to 45 days, 31 of them already served, plus 12 months probation.