Kamloops man apologizes after judge tells him to stop spitting in people's faces

KAMLOOPS - A young man who spat in the face of a police officer and repeated the same tactic with a corrections officer will be released from jail after four months.

Sebastian Downes, 18, pleaded guilty to five charges in Kamloops provincial court Monday and received a sentence of time served.

Provincial court heard Downes was bound by a youth probation order in May when he missed his curfew. He then stole $40 worth of booze from a liquor store and $275 worth of equipment from another store.

When police tracked him down, he spat in the face of the arresting officer.

Crown lawyer Danika Heighes said Downes exhibited similar behaviour about a month later when he was being led back to his cell from the visiting room at Kamloops Regional Correctional Centre.

"That culminated in Mr. Downes lunging forward and spitting in (the corrections officer's) left eye," she said.

"He was only about a foot away when he spat in his eye. He needs to understand that thefts and spitting on peace officers is not acceptable behaviour."

"You need to treat authority figures — police officers, guards — with respect," provincial court Judge Chris Cleaveley told Downes. "You can't go around spitting in people's faces."

Downes apologized and said life behind bars has been rough.

"I'm pretty embarrassed of my actions," he said. "Jail is difficult. Living with someone you don't really know. The system is difficult."

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