Man sentenced to one day in jail for drunken behaviour in Summerland | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Man sentenced to one day in jail for drunken behaviour in Summerland

Image Credit: FILE PHOTO
January 15, 2018 - 4:00 PM

PENTICTON - A former Penticton man, once referred to as “incorrigible” by a Penticton judge for his refusal to stop drinking and causing public disturbances, made a return appearance to the court this morning.

Gerzon Kovacs, 67, was sentenced to a year in jail in January 2016 for his drunken public behaviour, but the pendulum of justice swung the other way today, Jan. 15, as he was given a sentence of a single day for his latest behaviour.

Kovacs appeared in Penticton court facing two counts of uttering threats stemming from a Sept. 22, 2017 incident in Summerland.

Crown prosecutor John Swanson told court a Summerland RCMP officer received a report that day about a disturbance at Peacock’s Perch Neighbourhood Pub in Summerland.

A man near the pub’s patio was yelling at patrons and throwing things. The officer arrived on scene to find the man inside the adjacent liquor store, yelling at the clerk.

Kovacs was detained and placed in the cruiser, after the officer ascertained he was intoxicated.

The officer was then told a man had been sitting on the pub’s patio with his wife and two children when Kovacs approached him, swearing and threatening him. He told the police officer Kovacs threatened to kill his children and "spit on their graves."

The officer then returned to the cruiser to arrest Kovacs for uttering threats, following which Kovacs began to yell and threaten the constable, saying he would kill the officer's family and spit on their graves as well.

Defence lawyer Robert Maxwell described Kovacs as “drunk as a skunk,” during the incident, saying his client approached the pub’s patio with his shopping cart and was irritating people.

Maxwell said the last time his client appeared before the court he was given a year in jail.

"He is a jerk when he gets drunk. He’s either a happy drunk, or a bitchy drunk, which he was here,” he said, adding his client had been a tenant at the Highland Motel, but when it was gutted by fire in early July 2017 he relocated to Summerland.

He noted Judge Gale Sinclair’s familiarity with Kovacs asking him to be “as merciful as you can” in passing sentence.

Kovacs admitted he was drunk during the incident, claiming not to remember all the details.

“I believe the lady from the Perch pushed my buttons,” he said, adding when he gets drunk he never gets physical. He apologized for causing the trouble.

Kovacs' support worker, Brian Midwood was also in court. He spoke on behalf of Kovacs.

“Alcohol is his problem. We don’t have adequate housing. He’s in a slum place in Summerland," he said. "There are not many homeless people in Summerland, so he stands out like a sore thumb out there.

Midwood said the District of Summerland wants him to move, and Kovacs would like to move, but there was no housing available for him in Penticton.

Kovacs received a sentence of one day on the two counts of uttering threats

“Just keep a lid on the drinking. You’re a great guy when you’re not drinking. Every time you see me it’s because you’ve been drinking,” Justice Sinclair said.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad or call 250-488-3065 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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