Why a Lake Country man got probation for smashing dad's head with a bat - InfoNews

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Why a Lake Country man got probation for smashing dad's head with a bat

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December 19, 2018 - 6:30 PM

KELOWNA - He fractured his own father’s skull with an aluminum baseball bat after a disagreement, but Jeremiah Hayes won’t be going to prison.

He’ll be on probation for three years in a suspended sentence.

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Janet Winteringham discarded a Crown recommendation to send him to prison for three to four months and said Hayes, 31, had no previous criminal history and isn’t a danger to the public. He also turned himself in immediately and appeared remorseful so there’s no reason to put him behind bars.

Though she didn’t rely on it as support for her conclusion, in a sentencing decision published today, Dec. 19, she pointed out what you might expect — there’s more to this story.

"It is clear that whatever (Jeremiah) Hayes suffered at the hands of his father, it continues to severely, but I hope not irreparably, impact him,” Winteringham said.

From background and psychological reports about Jeremiah, Winteringham described the “incredibly rough hand” he was dealt. His mother suffered a mental illness and was “limited” as a parent while his father David Hayes was described as “an abusive father.” Jeremiah was first placed in foster care at age 11. In 2009, Jeremiah was diagnosed with neurocognitive impairment connected to a number of concussions he sustained.

That’s all the context offered for what happened June 6, 2015. Jeremiah and David had a disagreement about some money Jeremiah may have owed and David opted to keep a saw belonging to Jeremiah. In apparent retaliation, Jeremiah waited at the side of his father’s Lake Country, B.C. home until he emerged, then surprised him and hit him three times with the bat.

He fractured David’s skull and cut his ear and David was off work for some time, recovering. In a victim impact statement, David told Winteringham: "I've said very little and done as little as possible to keep from making it worse for my son, but wish to see an end.”

Jeremiah was convicted Sept. 18, 2018 by a jury for assault causing bodily harm. His probationary term is part of a suspended sentence, which is much more serious than simple probation. Breaching any condition will mean, in addition to being charged and penalized for the breach, the sentence for the original offence can be revoked and substituted with a new sentence.


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