October 31st, 2020

Dangerous offender hearing set to resume


By Shurtz, Delon on June 10, 2020.

Delon Shurtz

lethbridge herald

dshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

A court hearing to determine whether convicted sex offender Trevor Philip Pritchard should be designated a dangerous offender is expected to resume later this month in a Lethbridge courtroom.

The hearing, which began in February before being interrupted because of COVID-19, is set to resume June 22 and June 24-26 in Court of Queen’s Bench.

If designated a dangerous offender, Pritchard would receive an indeterminate term of imprisonment without parole eligibility for seven years.

The dangerous offender hearing began Feb. 3, and after five days was adjourned, but scheduled to resume in late March for several more days. When the coronavirus pandemic struck, the matter was adjourned again, but without a continuation date. The new dates were finally confirmed Monday during a brief court hearing.

Pritchard, who is expected to appear at the hearing by closed-circuit TV from Alberta’s Bowden Institution, has convictions for sexually assaulting underage girls in 2004, 2009 and 2010. He pleaded guilty in 2018 to sexual assault and child luring in relation to one girl, and he was sentenced in February of last year to six and a half years in a federal penitentiary.

Court was told Pritchard carefully planned the assault and, using Facebook, carefully groomed the girl to trust him over several months before he finally took her to his house – under the pretense of giving her a job – and forced her into various sex acts. He then drove her home and threatened to kill her if she told anyone.

He was also found guilty in January 2019 following a trial on charges of sexual assault, luring and possession of child pornography in relation to other girls. Sentencing on those charges was adjourned pending the outcome of the dangerous-offender hearing.

During her opening statements to court at the start of the dangerous offender hearing, Crown Prosecutor Sarah Goard-Baker said Pritchard has shown a pattern of repetitive, persistent aggressive behaviour and a failure to control sexual impulses. She said the Crown will prove Pritchard is a “significant future threat.”

Matt Kennedy, a former parole officer at Alberta’s Bowden Institution, testified at the start of the hearing in February and said Pritchard was more motivated to play video games than to participate in programs aimed at helping sex offenders.

Kennedy recommended Pritchard be transferred to another facility after he breached the confidentiality of other inmates participating in a sex-offender program in which Pritchard was enrolled, and because he didn’t show any improvement following his initial assessments. He also didn’t show any desire to reduce his high risk of reoffending.

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