R. v. Arnault (R.), (2009) 446 A.R. 393 (NWTCA)

JudgeBerger, O'Brien and Rowbotham, JJ.A.
CourtCourt of Appeal (Northwest Territories)
Case DateJanuary 20, 2009
JurisdictionNorthwest Territories
Citations(2009), 446 A.R. 393 (NWTCA)

R. v. Arnault (R.) (2009), 446 A.R. 393 (NWTCA);

      442 W.A.C. 393

MLB headnote and full text

Temp. Cite: [2009] A.R. TBEd. FE.056

Her Majesty the Queen (respondent) v. Raymond Arnault (appellant)

(A1-AP2008000007; 2009 NWTCA 1)

Indexed As: R. v. Arnault (R.)

Northwest Territories Court of Appeal

Berger, O'Brien and Rowbotham, JJ.A.

January 20, 2009.


The accused pled guilty to sexual assault. He was sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment followed by one year probation. The accused appealed the sentence.

The Northwest Territories Court of Appeal, Berger, J.A., dissenting, dismissed the appeal.

Criminal Law - Topic 5932

Sentence - Sexual assault (incl. by multiple parties) - The 58 year old accused was invited to stay in the home of the complainant after he shared drinks with her and her husband - The complainant went to bed - She awoke to find the accused with his hands down her pants and his fingers in her vagina - She fled to a neighbour's home, the RCMP were summoned, and the accused, observed to be in an intoxicated condition, was immediately arrested - The accused pled guilty to sexual assault and sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment followed by one year probation - The accused appealed the sentence, asserting that the sentencing judge's use of the words "reprehensible", "disgraceful", "appalling", "despicable" and "calloused" led her to overemphasize the aggravating circumstances of the offence and the sentencing judge failed to give adequate weight to the accused's efforts to rehabilitate his alcoholism - The Northwest Territories Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal - While the sentencing judge used strong language to describe the accused's conduct and the degree of his responsibility, when read in the context of her reasons as a whole, she did not overemphasize the aggravating factors - The offence took place in the complainant's home into which the accused had been invited and he assaulted her while she slept - Regarding the accused's efforts to rehabilitate, the sentencing judge noted these and placed them in the context of previous probation orders which directed counseling and the accused's lengthy criminal record for alcohol-related offences - See paragraphs 1 to 6.

Cases Noticed:

R. v. Shropshire (M.T.), [1995] 4 S.C.R. 227; 188 N.R. 284; 65 B.C.A.C. 37; 106 W.A.C. 37, refd to. [para. 13].

R. v. C.A.M., [1996] 1 S.C.R. 500; 194 N.R. 321; 73 B.C.A.C. 81; 120 W.A.C. 81; 105 C.C.C.(3d) 327, refd to. [para. 13].


C. Gagnon, for the respondent;

C. Wawzonek, for the appellant.

This appeal was heard on January 20, 2009, by Berger, O'Brien and Rowbotham, JJ.A., of the Northwest Territories Court of Appeal. The judgment of the Court of Appeal was delivered orally on the same date and included the following opinions:

Rowbotham, J.A. (O'Brien, J.A., concurring) - see paragraphs 1 to 6;

Berger, J.A., dissenting - see paragraphs 7 to 15.

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