October 03, 2013 - 11:05 AM
PENTICTON - The sentencing of a man guilty of viciously beating two others for no apparent reason was delayed at Penticton Provincial Court today.
Judge Gregory Koturbash said he needed more time to consider the fate of Marcus Wilfred Sheena, 29, who has plead guilty to several assault charges committed on Sept. 17, 2011.
On one hand, Koturbash has Crown prosecutor John Swanson seeking a four-year term for Sheena in a federal penitentiary where Sheena could use an aboriginal healing program and on the other he has defense lawyer Renzo Caron calling for a lesser sentence for Sheena with time served in his community.
Swanson argues Sheena has breached 24 previously issued court orders and has a lengthy criminal record with the most violent act landing him in custody for two years. On Sept. 17, 2011 Sheena along with an unidentified female approached a Nelson Avenue garage in Penticton where two men were having a few beers. Sheena asked for a cigarette, received one then accidentally dropped it. He tried to enter the garage but was told he could not.
Sheena grabbed a ball-peen hammer and hit one man in the stomach with it. The other man intervened and the three began to scuffle. During the fight, one man was stabbed in the neck with the blade narrowly missing major arteries and veins. One of the men broke free and sought help. Sheena had left the scene by the time police arrived. He was arrested a few months later.
Swanson wants the judge to not put much weight on Sheena's aboriginal heritage when it comes to sentencing, considering the violence he has committed and his long criminal record. Sheena's best chance is being locked up for four years and in the Aboriginal Pathways Strategy program, he said.
If he's released any sooner Swanson fears "he is going to do life imprisonment in installments." The prosecutor admits asking for four years in this case is "out of the ordinary" but the circumstances "are out of the ordinary."
Caron believes Sheena could benefit from other aboriginal programs and a lesser sentence. The young man has reached out to his family for the first time in a long time and has been imprisoned for two years already.
Sheena himself wants out sooner than later as he can better care for his two daughters who are in foster care. "I grew up in foster homes and I know how it is," he said.
A new sentencing date will be arranged on Wednesday. Sheena has plead guilty to aggravated assault, two counts of assault with a weapon and two assaults causing bodily harm.
To contact a reporter for this story, to send photos or videos, email Shannon Quesnel at firstname.lastname@example.org, call 250-488-3065, tweet @shannonquesnel1 or @InfoNewsPentict
- This story was updated at 9:18 a.m., Oct. 4, 2013 to correct the details leading to Marcus Wilfred Sheena's arrest.
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