Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Former Mountie Has 'Fallen a Long Way,' His Lawyer Tells B.C. Sentencing Hearing

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Former Mountie Has 'Fallen a Long Way,' His Lawyer Tells B.C. Sentencing Hearing

Article excerpt

Ex-Mountie 'poster child for failure,' says lawyer

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VANCOUVER - The lawyer for an ex-Mountie who lied at a public inquiry into Robert Dziekanski's death is recommending house arrest and community service for his client, calling him a "poster child for failure."

"He's fallen a long way and I think he could bring some insight to others who struggle, particularly in the aboriginal community," said David Crossin, who represents former RCMP corporal Benjamin (Monty) Robinson.

Robinson was in B.C. Supreme Court on Tuesday for a sentencing hearing, three months after he was convicted of perjury stemming from testimony he gave at an inquiry into Dziekanski's death at Vancouver's airport.

Crossin recommended Robinson be sentenced to one year of house arrest followed by 12 months of curfew and 200 hours of community service, preferably in the area of drug and alcohol counselling.

Reading from a doctor's submission, Crossin said Robinson suffered from undiagnosed post-traumatic stress disorder and alcohol abuse when he testified at the inquiry in early 2009, and that he remained in that debilitated state until his trial in 2012.

"It was the conviction in 2012 that brought these matters, in a way, crashing down on Mr. Robinson," Crossin said. "He began in March of 2012 the process of recovery."

Crossin also brought up Robinson's aboriginal heritage as a mitigating factor, as well as his family history of alcohol abuse.

Robinson, who is in his mid-40s, left the RCMP in 2012 and has been sober since then, Crossin said.

The RCMP has held up Robinson as an example of a bad apple in its ranks, and that assessment included a separate, unrelated case when he was convicted of obstruction of justice before he left the force in 2012.

Robinson was behind the wheel in October 2008 when his vehicle struck and killed a 21-year-old motorcyclist in Delta, south of Vancouver. …

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