Man convicted of threatening to burn down neighbours’ cabin near St. Paul’s
CORNER BROOK, N.L. — Based on the evidence presented to him, Judge Wayne Gorman has convicted a man with threatening to burn down a neighbour’s cabin in Old House Rocks near St. Paul’s last August.
In his written decision released following an Oct. 8 appearance in provincial court in Corner Brook, Gorman said Dean Edmund Bennett intended for his neighbours to take the threat seriously.
“It was meant to frighten and intimidate them,” wrote the judge.
On Aug. 25, 2018, Bennett’s neighbour noticed the water level at his cabin had dropped. When he checked the well, the court heard, he found it had been tampered with.
The man fixed the well. Later in the day, however, the water pressure in the man’s cabin dropped twice more. During one of the incidents, the man saw Bennett in the area of the well. He then contacted the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
An officer spoke to the man and his wife, and spoke with Bennett before leaving the area.
Bennett then went to the couple’s cabin and said he had not turned off the water. Bennett was described as being very loud and he was asked to leave.
He then made reference to burning them down.
The couple said they took his words seriously and did not sleep that night. They contacted the police again and Bennett was arrested.
Gorman said the couple were honest and credible witnesses, but that he did not believe Bennett’s evidence.
He said Bennett’s evidence was self-contradictory. At one point, he said he didn’t speak to the couple, but later indicated he did and that he didn’t remember what he said.
Submissions and sentencing in the case will be made Oct. 21.