No jail time for man who assaulted teenager outside Mary Brown's

No jail time for man who assaulted teenager outside Mary Brown's
No jail time for man who assaulted teenager outside Mary Brown's

اخبار العرب-كندا 24: الجمعة 24 مايو 2024 10:29 صباحاً

Three young women wearing hijabs were taking out the garbage from the Mary's Diner on Torbay Rd. in St. John's when they were attacked

A judge has given John Canning a suspended sentence with a year's probation for assault following an altercation with three young women outside a Mary's Diner restaurant in St. John's in 2022. (Peter Cowan/CBC)

A St. John's man who pleaded guilty to slapping a teenage girl outside a fast food restaurant will not serve jail time.

John Canning was charged with assault after getting into a fight with three Mary Brown's workers outside the Mary's Diner restaurant on Torbay Road in May 2022.

He pleaded guilty to the charge but said it was not racially motivated. In March a provincial court judge determined Canning did not commit a hate crime.

Earlier this week Canning received a suspended sentence with probation for one year.

"With regard to the issue of whether Mr. Canning's assault on the complainant was racially motivated, I have considered the evidence of all of the witnesses as it relates to what Mr. Canning said during the course of the assault and its surrounding circumstances," Judge Phyllis Harris wrote in her decision.

"There is significant inconsistency amongst all four witnesses regarding the use of a racial slur by Mr. Canning. Mr. Canning denies it altogether."

The complainant, who was in Grade 9 at the time, said she was in a parked car with her sister and a co-worker near the restaurant when Canning approached them to ask what they were doing and to speak English. The three young women testified Canning used a racial slur and slapped the complainant, who then threw her iced coffee at him.

Canning said he saw a car parked suspiciously and approached it but when he recognized one of the young women from the restaurant sitting in the car, he left. He said the women then got out of the car and began yelling at him.

In her decision, Harris noted the complainant did not mention the use of a racial slur in her initial statement to police but reported it weeks later. She also wrote she did not find Canning's evidence credible or reliable.

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