Justice Ann-Marie Smith has been urged to impose a lesser sentence on Trinidad native, Andre Stedman, who was found guilty of indecently assaulting and raping a minor a few years ago.
The 56-year-old offender’s attorney, Stephen Daniels told the court on Friday that while the more severe offence of rape carries a life sentence, he wants the court to begin at the 12-year mark.
To bolster his point, the attorney noted that the sentence for manslaughter — where there is a loss of life — starts at the 15-year mark in this jurisdiction.
Victim did not get pregnant
The attorney, in the meantime, also argued that the victim did not get pregnant and there was no violence involved during the incident.
However, Justice Smith told the defence attorney that while the victim did not get pregnant, the rape offence was aggravated by the fact that Stedman did not use a condom.
Daniels had also urged the court to consider the victim impact assessment as a mitigating factor. The assessment indicated that while there was some psychological impact on the victim, that impact subsided to some degree after his client’s conviction.
To further back his argument, Daniels produced a letter from Stedman’s former employer at a well-known security firm. The letter described the offender was ‘a model employee’.
The attorney also indicated that a report from Her Majesty’s Prison said his client was an exemplary inmate.
Daniels, however, accepted that the court should consider as aggravating, the age difference between Stedman and the victim who was under the age of 13 at the time of the offence.
Other aggravating factors accepted was the apparent breach of trust and the fact that the incident occurred ‘on the spur of the moment’.
Additionally, the fact that the victim was told not to report the incident which occurred at her home were other aggravating factors of the case.
Don’t make sentences consecutive
Urging the court to “impose a reasonable sentence,” Daniels also asked the court to impose sentences that would run concurrent to each other. Concurrent sentences effectively mean Stedman will not be made to serve his prison times ‘one after the other’ but, rather, ‘at the same time’.
In the meantime, the Crown said the incident was a violation of the victim’s sexual autonomy.
Stedman will be sentenced on June 21.
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