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Man jailed for mall guard assault

Jennifer Geens
Northern News Services

Yellowknife (Nov 10/06) - A 64-year-old Yellowknife man was sentenced on Wednesday to jail for assaulting a mall security guard, causing a disturbance and for two counts of uttering threats.

According to the testimony of a former Centre Square Mall security guard, on Oct. 26, 2005, Antonio Digiacomo attempted to get a cup of coffee from a kiosk from which he had been banned for previous belligerent behaviour.

When Digiacomo was refused service, he began to yell obscenities, the former guard testified. The guard asked him to leave, and Digiacomo began to comply.

Then, according to the guard, Digiacomo took out his false teeth out and slapped him, knocking his glasses off. The guard said Digiacomo also spat on him and tried to kick him in the groin, but missed and hit his thigh.

Territorial court Judge Robert Gorin convicted Digiacomo on a charge of assault. He had previously pleaded guilty to a charge of causing a disturbance from the same incident.

Digiacomo had also previously pleaded guilty to a charge of uttering threats from an incident on Nov. 4, 2005 at the Gold Range Bistro, where he yelled at a man that he had a knife and wasn't afraid to use it, according to facts submitted by Crown counsel Darren Mahoney.

In his defence, Digiacomo said he had consumed a bottle of wine and a bottle of sambuca and that it was "a deadly combination."

Representing himself in court, Digiacomo disputed the facts entered by Crown counsel.

RCMP Const. Resus Orgn testified that he was called to the Discovery Inn around 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 26 because of a fight, and when he arrived, he saw Digiacomo on the floor, restrained by two men. As his rights were being read, Digiacomo swore at one of the men and yelled, "I would gladly do 25 years, just give me a gun," testified the officer. Mahoney asked for a sentence of six-to-eight months jail for all the convictions, citing the man's "somewhat lengthy" record with similar convictions.

"Mr. Digiacomo has to learn that this behaviour has to stop," said Mahoney. "He can't go around threatening people's lives all over town."

Digiacomo asked that sentencing be delayed until next Tuesday, as he had to make arrangements for his absence, most pressing being the care of two Persian cats he was looking after for a friend who is in jail.

Judge Gorin sentenced Digiacomo to four months jail for the assault on the mall security guard, four months for the threat in the Gold Range Bistro, two months for the threat at the Discovery Inn, and two months concurrent for causing a disturbance at the mall. Gorin also ordered a 10-year firearms prohibition and that Digiacomo provide a DNA sample.

The judge also ordered the court clerk to contact the John Howard Society, Great Slave Animal Hospital and the NWT SPCA to make sure the cats were looked after for the weekend.