July 22nd, 2019

Delmas gets 78 months for sex assault; out in 4.5 months due to time served

By JEREMY APPEL on July 11, 2019.

jappel@medicinehatnews.com@MHNJeremyAppel

A man convicted of three sexual assaults since 2007 has been sentenced to 78 months in custody for his most recent offence.

However, since Michael Delmas has been in remand since his arrest in April 2015, he will spend just an additional four-and-a-half months in provincial jail due to credit for time served, Judge Gordon Krinke ruled Wednesday at Medicine Hat Provincial Court.

This allowed Krinke to sentence Delmas to three years probation upon his release, which would be unavailable if he had been sentenced to more than two additional years in prison.

Delmas was supposed to have a dangerous offender hearing scheduled for June 27.

Granting dangerous offender status allows the court to impose an indeterminate sentence for up to seven years or a regular sentence with a long-term supervision order.

The Crown needs a signed letter from the attorney general to proceed with the hearing, which it didn’t receive and were informed they wouldn’t receive mere weeks before the hearing date.

After the dangerous offender hearing was quashed, the Crown attempted in its sentencing submissions to procure a sentence of six-to-eight years in prison with only four years credit for time served, so Delmas could go on probation while being eligible for the treatment programs available in federal prison.

“This flies in the face of decisions of our Supreme Court and I refuse to do it,” Krinke said in his sentencing ruling.

Defence counsel Allan Fay had requested a sentence of six-and-a-half years with credit for time served at time-and-a-half, which would have set him free immediately.

Delmas was convicted of his most recent sexual assault in June 2018 after a two-day trial.

The charge stems from an incident in February 2015 when he arrived at the house of the victim – at the time a friend – high on methamphetamine.

They were seated on a couch watching TV when Delmas made unwanted advances on her, so she sat on the floor.

Delmas then pushed her, pinned her to the ground and tried to remove her pants.

A month after his arrest, he entered guilty pleas to two counts of sexual assault and one of choking in relation the 2015 incident against the advice of duty counsel and the presiding judge.

The Court of Appeals ruled in late-2017 that the guilty pleas should be withdrawn. Afterwards, one of the sexual assault charges was dropped and the choking charge was changed to simple assault, for which he was acquitted.

Krinke considered this “guilty plea at essentially the first opportunity” a mitigating factor, although Delmas didn’t follow through on it.

As aggravating factors, Krinke cited Delmas’s record of committing similar sexual offences, his high risk of re-offending – as outlined in a court-ordered psychological assessment – and the fact that the act was committed in the victim’s home, leaving her nowhere to escape to.

According to the psychological assessment, Delmas suffers from several mental illnesses, including anti-social personality, borderline personality, sexual sadism and substance abuse disorders.

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