Jail for sex crimes
Paul Wilfred Manning maintains innocence as judge sentences him to two years less a day in jail on two sex offences involving a child
A P.E.I. man who maintains he is innocent despite a judge finding him guilty of sex offences involving someone younger than 16 was sentenced Thursday to two years less a day in jail.
Paul Wilfred Manning appeared before Chief Judge Nancy Orr in provincial court in Georgetown for sentencing after she found him guilty in June of five offences.
On Thursday, the number of charges was reduced to two, in part because some were based on the same facts and could be dealt with under one count of sexual assault.
Manning was also sentenced for exposing his genitals to someone younger than 16 for a sexual purpose.
Before hearing his sentence, Manning rose at the defence table where he maintained his innocence.
“The allegations I’m being accused of are false,” he said.
Orr found Manning guilty after a trial that lasted several days and saw the young victim testify through video from outside the courtroom.
Manning didn’t testify in his own defence.
A publication ban prevents the release of any details that could identify the victim.
In making his submissions Thursday, Crown attorney Jeff MacDonald talked about a victim impact statement he said spoke to a “shattering of trust” and a fraying of bonds in the community.
It also spoke to the long-term impacts on the victim, MacDonald said.
“This is not something that will be forgotten tomorrow.”
In her submissions, defence lawyer Chera-Lee Hickox said a sentence in the range of 18-24 months was appropriate.
Hickox said Manning had a positive pre-sentence report in which family members described him as caring, reliable, generous and a good person.
Manning’s son and two brothers also wrote letters of support.
Hickox said Manning wished no ill will toward the victim and wished her good health.
Orr said denunciation and deterrence were the main factors in determining a sentence, but she also had to consider rehabilitation.
That was a challenge in this case because Manning didn’t acknowledge any wrongdoing, she said.
Orr sentenced Manning to two years less a day in jail on each of the two charges to be served concurrently.
Manning will be on probation for three years, which will include a condition he not have any contact with the victim unless his probation officer gives written consent.
He also will be under a weapons prohibition for 10 years and must provide a DNA sample for the national databank.
In addition, Manning will be on the national sex offender registry for life.
Although Orr sometimes orders apology letters to victims as conditions of probation, she said there was not much point in doing so in Manning’s case.
Paul Wilfred Manning, left, seen through the window of a Provincial Correctional Centre van, leaves provincial court in Georgetown after a judge sentenced him to almost two years in jail.