January 15th, 2021

Man given conditional sentence for assault

By Shurtz, Delon on June 18, 2020.

Delon Shurtz

lethbridge herald


Barney Zacharias was avenging his mother when he beat up his father during a drunken rage last year.

At about 2:45 a.m. Dec. 26, Zacharias and another man went to the Heritage Inn Hotel in Taber where he knew he would find his father. Because of their relation, a clerk gave Zacharias a key to his father’s room. Zacharias let himself into the room where he began punching and kicking his father, who was also drunk at the time.

The older man was hospitalized for several days with a broken nose and bleeding on the brain, but he eventually made a full recovery.

Zacharias, 21, pleaded guilty Tuesday in Lethbridge provincial court to one count of assault causing bodily harm and received an 18-month conditional sentence.

Lethbridge lawyer Greg White explained his client’s father had earlier assaulted his wife, and in a rage Zacharias went after his father.

White pointed out, however, that Zacharias’s father does not hold any “ill will” toward his son and does not want him to go to jail.

Crown prosecutor Ian Elford told court Zacharias went to the police station afterward and turned himself in even before police returned from their initial investigation of the assault. He also provided a full confession.

For the first nine months of his conditional sentence, Zacharias will, with only a few exceptions, be under 24-hour house arrest. During the remaining nine months he will have to obey a curfew from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. every day. He must reside at an approved residence in Lethbridge, receive counselling for anger management and as otherwise directed, stay away from his father, and not consume any alcohol or be in any licensed premise whose primary business is to sell alcohol. He is also prohibited from possessing weapons for 10 years, and he must submit a sample of his DNA for the National DNA Databank.

Elford noted the 18-month conditional sentence is a lengthy sentence for a first-time offender, but he added the assault against the victim was serious. Zacharias had been charged with the more serious offence of aggravated assault, but he agreed to plead guilty to the less serious charge of assault causing bodily harm. He was also charged with housebreaking with intent to commit an indictable offence, and uttering threats to cause death or bodily harm, but they were withdrawn.

A co-accused, Pancho Teichroeb, is charged with aggravated assault and housebreaking with intent in relation to the December attack. He is scheduled to be in court July 28.

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