October 20th, 2020

Still no sentencing date for man guilty of luring, sex assault


By Shurtz, Delon on April 3, 2020.

Delon Shurtz

lethbridge herald

dshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

A sentencing date has yet to be scheduled for a 39-year-old man who admitted earlier this year he lured an underage girl and then had sex with her.

Gary James Lippa pleaded guilty in February to charges of sexual assault, child luring and making, printing and publishing child pornography. His sentencing hearing was adjourned, however, and defence requested a pre-sentence report and forensic risk assessment to provide the court with Lippa’s personal circumstances, background and psychological profile, to help the judge render a fit sentence.

The matter was scheduled to return to court last week to set a date for sentencing, but it was adjourned without setting a date, and is scheduled to return to court April 27 when the matter will be spoken to.

Court was told during a hearing Feb. 19 that Lippa dated the mother of the 13-year-old girl he lured into having sex with him, and often referred to the girl as his niece. After the relationship between Lippa and the girl’s mother ended, Lippa and the girl lost touch with each other until after she turned 13 in November 2016 and he began communicating with her online, often texting her graphic sexual comments and requesting nude photos of her.

In August 2017, the two met several times while she was in Lethbridge staying with friends of the family. On one occasion they went to his residence and had sex.

In September the girl’s mother found out she was inappropriately communicating with Lippa online and she contacted the RCMP. The girl provided a statement to police and was told to stop communicating with Lippa. However, he continued talking to her and helped her hide the communications from her family.

After the girl turned 14 Lippa continued to communicate with her sexually, then on Feb. 22, 2018 police arrested him, searched his home, and seized several electronic devices. At first Lippa denied having sex with the girl, but later admitted he did one time.

Charges of internet luring and making, printing and publishing child pornography have minimum, legislated sentences of one year each, which means Lippa will likely serve time in a federal penitentiary.

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