BOYLE – An Athabasca-area man who has been in jail since February will remain there on other charges after pleading guilty to two counts of failing to comply with release order conditions.
In Boyle Provincial Court Sept. 13, Judge Gerald T. Annetts accepted the two guilty pleas to the charges from Wesley Teigan Sauer who appeared via CCTV from Edmonton Remand Centre, where he has been held since Feb. 27.
Judge Annetts heard Sauer, 49, sentenced Sauer to 15 days in jail on the first charge and another 30 days for the second, a total of 45 days, that were deemed served considering his already lengthy stay at ERC.
Court heard Sauer breached the conditions of a release order on two separate occasions by contacting the complainant after he was ordered not to contact her by any means as a condition of his bail following Feb. 14 charges. She reported text and voice messages to the RCMP shortly after, saying she recognized Sauer’s voice, on the other end.
The Crown told Judge Annetts that Sauer had contacted the complainant twice following his arrest. In one message he expressed his love asking her to “talk to the Crown prosecutor” to get him out of there. In another, he threatened a smear campaign against her if she didn’t drop the charges.
Sauer has pleaded not guilty to four charges of assault, one by choking, another on a peace officer; resisting a peace officer; and unlawful confinement stemming from a Feb. 14 domestic violence incident. He will face trial on these charges in October.
The Crown noted Sauer’s criminal record went back to 2018 and didn’t include any other breaches when submitting the joint submission on sentencing for 45 days. She did note the other charges Sauer pleaded not guilty to though, and said the breaches were considered particularly aggravating as he advised her to speak with the Crown and/or recant the allegations. She did give him credit for relatively early guilty pleas, however, saying it was an indication he was taking responsibility for his actions and is remorseful.
Defence lawyer Ashton Milroy appeared on behalf of Sauer’s counsel of record Shaun King, saying Sauer was a lifelong Athabasca resident, except for a five-year period he worked up north in northwest Alberta. She noted several tragedies that changed Sauer’s life drastically, and eventually led him to a severe methamphetamine addiction.
Milroy also noted Sauer has been sober for nearly 200 days in jail and is now coming to terms with how those tragedies influenced his mental health and his addiction.
Two identical charges were withdrawn as well as one charge of failing to appear for fingerprinting.
A further hearing to speak to Sauer’s release took about a half-hour, and despite having a reliable surety lined up, Judge Annetts denied the request for release.