Two years plus
Nightmare may finally be over

by Chris Meyers Almey
Northern News Services

NNSL (Mar 19/97) - A Yellowknife woman's nightmare may finally be over.

The man who recently pleaded guilty to twice trashing her home last spring has been sentenced to penitentiary time for the mental anguish and devastating havoc he wreaked on her life.

Mary was the name this newspaper used last year when reporting about the woman who police warned to leave the city because her life could be in danger.

In Supreme Court Monday, Justice Ted Richard said Michael Gabriel Jones, 35, "terrorized this woman" and sentenced him to 12 months for breaking into the Johnston Crescent home between May 25 and June 1.

He tacked on a further 15 months for again breaking into the house June 4.

The judge refused to put any of the "dead jail time" Jones has served -- he's been in custody since last August -- towards reducing the 27 months sentence.

That's because of Jones's "flagrant violation of terms of bail" to stay away from the house.

Dead jail time refers to time spent in custody while awaiting trial.

Jones's estranged spouse had complained to the RCMP and he was arrested May 29 on charges of sexual assault -- which he was acquitted of last December.

But Jones remained in jail where he had been since late August because of further break and enter charges he faced.

The circumstances of the crimes are "very, very serious and Mr. Jones must accept that the punishment must fit the crime," said Richard.

"He terrorized this woman. He had to know the effect of these rampages. Aside from the damage to the household, to cut up a person's clothing can only be viewed as calculated affliction of emotional trauma," Richard said.

He said he had been told that although the victim moved south, she lives in constant fear and her life has been ruined. As yet, the house remains unsold and the woman has suffered financially.

"It will be a long time, if ever, that she will recover from the emotional trauma caused by Mr. Jones," said Richard.

He outlined the thousands of dollars damage done in the two break-ins -- holes were gouged in drywall, wallpaper ripped off, bleach poured on carpets, furniture and dishes smashed, the victim's clothing stained, bleached and cut up.

In court last Friday, a tearful Jones said that he wanted to participate in the upbringing of the two-year-old daughter he fathered with his victim.