Man agrees to ex­ile

The Western Star - - Close To Home - BY TARA BRAD­BURY

A man con­victed of drag­ging a po­lice of­fi­cer with a getaway car af­ter a break-in has been sen­tenced to time served — and ban­ished from the prov­ince for a year.

Gordie Bishop de­clined com­ment when asked af­ter court whether he had any­thing to say, but his fa­ther, Gor­don Davis, said Bishop would likely move to Fort McMur­ray, where his mother and other fam­ily mem­bers live.

Davis told SaltWire Net­work he had hoped the judge would in­clude a year of manda­tory coun­selling in his son’s sen­tence, in or­der to help him cope with some trauma he faced as a child.

Bishop, 32, has been in cus­tody since his ar­rest in Jan­uary 2015, when he was charged with ag­gra­vated as­sault of a po­lice of­fi­cer, as­sault­ing a po­lice of­fi­cer with a weapon, break and en­ter, dan­ger­ous driv­ing and other charges.

He was found guilty on all counts in Fe­bru­ary, and in Supreme Court in St. John’s on Tues­day af­ter­noon, his lawyer and the Crown pre­sented Jus­tice Alphon­sus Faour with a joint sub­mis­sion for sen­tenc­ing.

Along with a re­quest that the judge credit Bishop for the two years and three months he has spent in jail, the sub­mis­sion in­cluded a re­quest for a ban­ish­ment or­der, a rarely used pun­ish­ment that will see Bishop banned from New­found­land and Labrador for a year, while he’s on pro­ba­tion.

“It is im­por­tant to know that this is not de­signed to foist a crim­i­nal on an­other ju­ris­dic­tion. It’s de­signed to break a cy­cle of crim­i­nal­ity,” Bishop’s lawyer, Stan Mac­Don­ald, told the court, adding Bishop’s per­sonal his­tory in­cludes phys­i­cal abuse, and a fam­ily his­tory of men­tal ill­ness and sep­a­ra­tion, with Bishop sep­a­rated from his fam­ily at one point. “It’s been rec­og­nized by Mr. Bishop that he needs to do things dif­fer­ently, and he does have prospects out­side New­found­land and Labrador.

“Mr. Bishop has never been away from New­found­land, but he has agreed he will leave the prov­ince. This will re­quire sep­a­ra­tion from fam­ily and friends, but most im­por­tantly, sep­a­ra­tion from a life­style.”

Bishop, who has a 27-page crim­i­nal record, in­clud­ing con­vic­tions for mul­ti­ple break-ins, prop­erty of­fences, pos­ses­sion of stolen goods, dan­ger­ous op­er­a­tion of a ve­hi­cle and as­sault with a weapon, was ar­rested Jan. 2, 2015, af­ter po­lice re­sponded to an early morn­ing alarm call at the Peter Eas­ton Pub on Cook­stown Road. Bishop was in­side the build­ing when of­fi­cers ar­rived, but ran out and jumped into a ve­hi­cle that was parked out­side.

When Const. Cathy Snel­grove tried to stop him, he sped off, drag­ging her un­til she man­aged to get free at the in­ter­sec­tion of Cook­stown and Le­marchant roads.

Snel­grove tes­ti­fied dur­ing Bishop’s trial that she had reached into the car through the pas­sen­ger door to try to grab the keys, and fell out af­ter she was dragged, hit­ting her head. At that time, she said, she was work­ing as a dis­patcher be­cause she wasn’t phys­i­cally ready to go back on the street.

Snel­grove was still in hospi­tal when Bishop was ar­rested four days later.

In ac­cept­ing the joint sub­mis­sion on sen­tenc­ing, Faour ac­knowl­edged there was no ev­i­dence Bishop in­tended to in­jure Snel­grove or an­other of­fi­cer, but it hap­pened in a mo­ment of panic.

“But I don’t want to min­i­mize the fact that these were se­ri­ous of­fences, and in the case of Const. Snel­grove, the in­juries were se­ri­ous,” the judge said.

Faour said the main mit­i­gat­ing fac­tor in the case is Bishop’s ap­par­ent will­ing­ness to make a break from his old life, as writ­ten in a pre-sen­tence re­port sub­mit­ted to the court.

Bishop had ac­knowl­edged his wrong­do­ings and had ex­pressed re­morse, and had par­tic­i­pated in dif­fer­ent pro­grams while in jail.

Bishop’s sen­tence also in­cludes a three-year driv­ing ban.


Gordie Bishop looks to­wards his fa­ther as he is taken out of the court­room at Supreme Court in St. John’s Tues­day af­ter­noon, to make prepa­ra­tions for his re­lease. He was sen­tenced to time served for drag­ging a po­lice of­fi­cer with a getaway car af­ter a...

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