Facepalm(s) in the North
David is the second of Suzy’s children. David is the only one of Suzy’s children with a formal diagnosis of FASD. David has an on-again/off-again relationship with Christine (on-again when she misses him and wants help to take care of their two-year old daughter and off-again when he gets drunk and beats her up). During the off-again times, he lives with Suzy, his 2 younger siblings and Suzy’s mother Gloria.
David lives in a tiny Arctic community of about 1000 souls. As is the case with all of Canada’s tiny Arctic communities, this one has primary and high schools, a Northern Store, an Arctic Co-op store, a post office, government offices of some sort, a Health Centre and a Royal Canadian Mounted Police detachment.
David’s older sister Janet has her own home with her common law. He works two-in / two-out at a local mine. When hubby is out at the mine, a fair bit of drinking takes place chez Janet.
David could not afford a bootleg bottle ($500 for a 60) so he broke into a local teacher’s home and stole one. Unfortunately, he had started drinking it when he ran into Suzy’s boyfriend, Fred, on his way home. When Fred punched him in head a few times to steal the bottle, David’s ability to fight back had been significantly compromised by the contents of the 60 and Fred ended up with the bottle.
David ended up bleeding and he walked over to the Health Centre. Fred went back to Suzy’s.
Suzy’s 15-year old daughter, Amanda, was passed out on her bed and no one else was home so Fred pulled down Amanda’s pants and helped himself.
While Fred was helping himself to Amanda, Gloria came back and, finding Fred on top of her granddaughter, began screaming hysterically at him to leave Amanda alone.
Fred stopped and got off leaving Amanda to roll off the bed and hit the deck with a thump but without a change to her state of consciousness. Fred pulled up his pants and left for Janet’s where he expected to find Suzy.
David’s 14-year old brother, Steven, ran into Fred on his way out the door. Fred, still being yelled at by Gloria, pushed Steven out of the way, missing the half-full 40 that Steven had stolen from a construction shack 30 minutes earlier.
Steven was sharing his booty with Gloria when David, not able to find anyone at the Health Center, arrived home.
It was with not a little sense of outrage that David listened to Gloria retell her story about Fred and Amanda. By the time the 40 was empty he was in a fury and prepared to extract some accountability from Fred.
He marched over to his sister Janet’s where, as Fred had expected, Suzy was there drinking with Janet, the better part of David’s twice stolen 60 having arrived with Fred.
At the sight of Fred, David lost it and grabbed the first thing that came to hand, Janet’s television, and fired it at Fred. The 40 that he had finished with Gloria and Steven had not helped his judgment to any great extent but it did help to cushion the disappointment he felt when the still plugged-in television crashed to the floor, well short of its target.
Not put off by this inconvenience, David moved to the next projectile, a portable radio, and launched it at Fred striking Suzy squarely in the middle of her forehead opening a 3 inch cut right to the bone. Suzy fell off the couch and began making quiet bleeding noises.
Fred is not the sort of man to put up with this kind of disrespect for his woman; he did some serious damage to David before throwing him out of the house. Fred returned to his drinking with Janet; David returned to the Health Center.
Someone called the police to say that someone appeared to be passed out at the Health Center. The officer who attended found a drunk and bloody and passed out David. The officer arranged for a nurse to be called out.
On the basis of David’s slurred account of what had taken place, the officer called his partner out and went to Janet’s where he found an unconscious Suzy lying on the floor with a pool of blood about a foot in diameter around her head.
In the officer’s Prosecutor’s Summary (always composed neutrally and objectively) there were 5 exclamation marks at the end of that sentence – “…about a foot in diameter!!!!!” I hope you didn’t think that this was fiction.
Janet assured the officer that her mother was just passed out as she passed out herself. Fred, as it happened, had also passed out making his arrest for sexual assault and assault cause bodily harm that much easier. The officer called out the guard for the cells and met his partner at the detachment. They then went and arrested David at the Health Centre, once he was patched up, for assault with a weapon, assault cause bodily harm, and break and enter commit theft and possession of stolen property. They went back and picked up Suzy and took her to the Health Centre to get her head stitched up.
The last stop the two officers made was at Suzy’s house to speak to Amanda about a sex assault examination (and maybe getting some of Fred’s DNA). She told them, when she came to the door, that she had just been having sex with her boyfriend so she didn’t think there was much point in going for a sex assault exam (she had been the complainant in 3 prior sex assaults so her opinion carried some weight). She did tell the police that she would get checked out at the Health Centre.
Fortunately, the police had received a report about Steven’s B&E at the construction shack so they did not leave Suzy’s empty handed.
PS: Steve was placed on probation for the construction shack B&E. David got 6 months for the B&E and 90 days for the ABH on his mom (transferred intent can be painfully ironic). Fred got 2 years for the rape and 90 days for the damage he did to David.
PPS: The next day, while it was sad news that family members were charged and likely going to be sent out to jail, on the plus side Suzy and Amanda both learned from their Health Centre attendances that they were about 6 weeks pregnant.