WINDSOR, N.S. - Members of the victim’s families, who can’t be identified due to a publication ban, said they were shocked by the sentence Garnett Smith received for multiple sex offences.
“Honestly, it’s a joke. Ninety days is a joke,” one family member said.
“We’ve been coming here for four years and he molested my daughter. She’s going to carry that with her for the rest of her life.”
Smith, who was convicted guilty on several sex-related charges against children, including exposing his genitals and sexual assault, will serve 90 days in jail at the Central Nova Scotia Correctional Facility in Burnside.
He’ll serve that sentence intermittently, meaning he will be in custody from Friday at 9 p.m. until Monday 6 a.m. until all 90 days are served.
Smith’s defense lawyer, Tim Peacock, requested the intermittent sentence on his client’s behalf, citing health concerns.
Crown lawyer Bill Fergusson said intermittent sentences are usually permitted to allow convicted persons to maintain employment and didn’t see the justification in Smith’s case.
Judge Alan Tufts allowed for the intermittent jail time, adding that going back and forth from a facility can often lead to more hardship for the convicted person.
Following Smith’s incarceration, he will serve three years of probation, with multiple conditions. When Smith is not in custody, he’ll remain under probation.
One of the conditions of that probation is not to be in the presence of children under 16 unless they are also in the company of “a responsible adult” over 18 who is aware of the offender’s circumstances.
Smith will also have to submit his DNA to the RCMP’s National DNA Data Bank.
Smith’s matter has stretched back to 2014, Judge Alan Tufts found him guilty of multiple sex-related charges involving minors in 2016.
The offences Smith was found guilty for occurred in Windsor in 2014. Smith had operated a skate-sharpening kiosk at the Hants Exhibition Arena around the time of the incidents. He was known by the nickname ‘gun’ at the time.
Smith was found guilty of indecent exposure against one underage girl in an incident that occurred in October 2014 as well as sexual assault, sexual touching, invitation of sexual touching and indecent exposure against another underage girl in June of 2014.
The crown had previously elected not to proceed with charges of sexual touching against a third complainant and charges of invitation of sexual touching and indecent exposure against a fourth.
Smith was due to be sentenced in April 2017, but Smith’s lawyer underwent a challenge the constitutionality of mandatory minimum sentences, which impacted the sentencing.
During the lengthy trial, the defence argued that Smith’s actions were the result of a cognitive or brain disorder. He was deemed fit to stand trial following a criminal responsibility report from the East Coast Forensic Hospital.