ATHABASCA – A Calling Lake man will spend the next three-plus years in prison following a vicious assault on Halloween 2021 that saw one man hospitalized.
In Athabasca Provincial Court March 13, Chester Gladue, 39, sat in the prisoner’s box as Crown prosecutor Nicole Parker and defense lawyer Adnan Fayad provided a joint submission to Judge Gordon Putnam that will see Gladue serve the remainder of a three-and-a-half-year sentence behind bars — Gladue had pleaded guilty to aggravated assault in Athabasca Provincial Court Oct. 17, 2022.
During sentencing, Judge Putnam also heard from a Calling Lake elder who spoke to some of the mitigating circumstances in the case.
“I have nothing but respect for you sir, and you as an elder in your society are a well-respected individual, and your words mean something. I think what’s going to be really important for Chester is that he does have that support from his society, from his culture in healing, and the other things that you can help him with,” said Judge Putnam.
Gladue spoke briefly saying that, “I’m trying my best to stay out of trouble, and to make some changes in my life … I was mistaken, and not thinking.”
As Gladue had already served 148 days, which counts as 222 enhanced, he has 1,055 left. Judge Putnam concluded by saying: “There’s better things ahead. It’s going to be hard, but I appreciate you saying those words, thank you.”
While Parker didn’t reiterate the facts of the case, as they had already been heard at the Oct. 17, 2022, Athabasca RCMP confirmed that the assault took place during the evening of Oct. 31, 2021, on a rural property directly outside town limits.
The RCMP were called to the property after reports of a stabbing and on arrival, they located one mn who had been stabbed and assaulted with a bat. He was eventually transported to the hospital for treatment and it was later determined that Gladue and at least one other man had been responsible for the assault.
Parker identified multiple aggravating factors, including a recent and related criminal record, the “major impacts” suffered by the victim, the use of a weapon for the assault, and the fact that the assault was both unprovoked, and planned by the group in advance.
Fayad agreed that the jurisprudence was clear, referring to the “unenviable and related” criminal record, as well as the impacts suffered by the victim. He also spoke at length to the history of Gladue, who grew up in an environment where his father “misused alcohol on a daily basis”, and where he was exposed to family violence, with Fayad calling him “a product of his environment.”
Fayad also stated that Gladue wished to serve his sentence at the Drumheller Institution, although he knew that the court didn’t have ultimate say in the matter. Judge Putnam agreed, saying “it makes a lot of sense to the court in the circumstance, that he serve his time in Drumheller, because I’m aware of the programs that are available.”