Crown asks for more than six years for man who shotgun blasted his way into Penticton school

Yvon Omer Martel could face more than six years behind bars for his role in a domestic dispute that spread to a nearby school in December, 2016.

PENTICTON  - A Penticton man who shot a shotgun in his home before using it again at Ecole Entre-Lacs School could face more than six years in jail for his actions.

Yvon Omer Martel was 59 years old when he discharged a shotgun in his residence following a domestic dispute with his wife. He then went to nearby Ecole Entre-Lacs School where he blasted a door with the shotgun.

Police found him inside the school, smoking a cigarette, around 5 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 11, 2016, and arrested him without incident.

Crown Prosecutor Ann Lerechs told Judge Meg Shaw at a sentencing hearing in Penticton court this afternoon, Nov. 8, Martel had a dated criminal record of four prior break and enters going back 20 years. Evidence heard during Martel’s recent trial revealed a history of mental health issues and struggles with alcohol.

She noted the Dec. 11, 2016 incident was one of domestic violence involving a firearm discharged within a townhouse.

The shotgun blast damaged a parting wall in the townhouse where the event took place.

She also noted Martel’s break and enter to an elementary school and the threat he presented to his wife in the middle of the night as aggravating factors in the incident, to which she said there was “no case law on point” from which to compare it to.

Lerechs asked Judge Meg Shaw for a sentence totalling six years and three months.

Martel has been in custody since the incident. With enhanced credit he currently has served 500 days.

Defence lawyer James Pennington noted his client’s 12 year gap in offences, the most previous one occurring in 1997.

He said his client posed no threat to anyone in the school break in, which took place on the weekend, with no one in the school.

He said his client never posed a threat to the community during the incident, agreeing with Crown in calling it “a unique case.”

Pennington asked for a sentence totalling four years.

Judge Shaw reserved judgement on the case, adjourning for two weeks.

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