For­mer Con­ser­va­tive MLA gets 3 years for sex of­fence in­volv­ing 10-year-old

The Observer (Sarnia) - - NATIONAL NEWS - LAU­REN KRUGEL

RED DEER, Alta. — A vic­tim who was touched sex­u­ally by a for­mer Al­berta politi­cian says she will never for­give the man for de­stroy­ing her child­hood.

Don MacIn­tyre, 63, re­signed in Fe­bru­ary of last year after he was charged with sex­ual in­ter­fer­ence and sex­ual as­sault. He pleaded guilty to the first charge in Red Deer, Alta., court Fri­day and was sen­tenced to three years in prison. The se­cond charge was to be with­drawn.

The vic­tim, sur­rounded by loved ones, cried as she de­scribed how the abuse made her give up cre­ative pur­suits she loved, gave her night­mares and made her phys­i­cally ill.

“It hurt my chest and I felt sick to my stom­ach all the time,” said the young woman, who can­not be iden­ti­fied. She said she is of­ten an­gry.

“I will carry this rage I have for him to my grave.”

An agreed state­ment of facts read out in court said MacIn­tyre touched the vic­tim sex­u­ally with a part of his body be­tween Jan. 1, 2010, and Dec. 31, 2011.

The touch­ing hap­pened be­tween five to 10 times when the vic­tim was 10 years old. She told her mother in 2015.

“He told her that God said that God was OK with the touch­ing,” the state­ment said, adding the vic­tim felt de­pressed and had sui­ci­dal thoughts.

“She would visu­al­ize stab­bing her­self and killing her­self.”

Court heard MacIn­tyre apol­o­gized after the as­saults, asked for for­give­ness and said it was part of “Satan’s plan to de­stroy (the vic­tim’s) faith.”

The vic­tim told court she some­times thought she was imag­in­ing things or that it was her fault. When MacIn­tyre fi­nally apol­o­gized, “I was so re­lieved I was not los­ing my mind,” she said.

The Crown is ask­ing for a prison sen­tence of be­tween three and 3 1/2 years, while MacIn­tyre’s lawyer is ask­ing for two years be­hind bars.

Prose­cu­tor Julie Snow­don said MacIn­tyre’s re­morse was a mit­i­gat­ing fac­tor, but she sug­gested that was tem­pered by his link­ing his ac­tions to the devil.

“It’s easy and con­ve­nient to de­flect blame to an ex­ter­nal force such as Satan,” said Snow­don, who added that was a fur­ther ex­am­ple of the ma­nip­u­la­tion tactics he used on his vic­tim.

De­fence lawyer Ian McKay said the im­mense pub­lic­ity the case at­tracted should fac­tor into the sen­tence.

“Ev­ery­body will know his face. Ev­ery­body will know what he’s done,” McKay said.

Court heard MacIn­tyre, who his lawyer said is deeply re­li­gious, has also lost the sup­port of his church com­mu­nity.

“This is a man who has been pun­ished in so many ways and will con­tinue to be pun­ished un­til his last breath,” McKay said.

MacIn­tyre apol­o­gized to the vic­tim from the pris­oner’s box for the “pain and an­guish” he caused.

He then wished her a life that is “whole and healthy and happy.”

MacIn­tyre had rep­re­sented the cen­tral Al­berta seat of In­n­is­fail-Syl­van Lake for the United Con­ser­va­tive Party.

He was first elected in 2015 for the Wil­drose Party, which merged with the Pro­gres­sive Con­ser­va­tives in 2017 to form the United Con­ser­va­tives.

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