By Delon Shurtz on December 8, 2020.
A man scheduled to have a sentencing hearing early in 2021 for shooting his ex-spouse’s lover in the head just weeks before last Christmas, now won’t be sentenced until a little later in the new year.
Kyle Lewis Crow Chief was to have the hearing in March on charges of break and enter to commit aggravated assault, and discharging a firearm to wound, maim, disfigure or endanger life. However, Monday in Lethbridge provincial court, the date was changed to May 27.
Court was told the date matter had to be adjourned after former chief Crown prosecutor Erin Olsen, who was handling the Crow Chief file, was recently appointed to be a provincial court judge.
Crown Prosecutor Dawn Janecke, who has taken over the file with co-prosecutor Tom Brannen, said other dates in March and April were available, but Calgary lawyer Balfour Der was not.
On Oct. 26 when Crow Chief pleaded guilty to the charges, the Crown explained Crow Chief was distraught over a split with his common-law spouse and entered her residence near Glenwood, where he caught her with another man and shot him in the head.
Crow Chief fled to Edmonton after the shooting during the early morning hours of Dec. 7, 2019, but was found several days later and charged with second-degree murder. The murder charge was withdrawn after the offender pleaded to the lesser charges.
Court was told in October that Crow Chief and his former spouse, Sheena Sugai, had separated two months before the shooting, and Crow Chief had moved in with his brother while Sugai remained in her father’s home. After learning on Oct. 6, 2019 that his ex was in a relationship with Jesse Day Rider, Crow Chief went into her house about 2:20 a.m. the following day, entered Sugai’s bedroom and found her and 41-year-old Day Rider asleep in bed. He shot Day Rider him in the head, then shot the unconscious man again in the shoulder.
Day Rider suffered a life-threatening brain injury and was taken by ambulance to Fort Macleod then transferred by the STARS air ambulance to Calgary. He remained on life support for several months and suffers from permanent and severe brain damage
Crow Chief provided a statement to police after the incident and blamed Sugai for the shooting, claiming she had been unfaithful and had lied to him. He said had she been honest with him, he may have handled things differently.
Sentencing was adjourned following Crow Chief’s guilty pleas to allow time for the preparation of several assessments, which will help the judge determine a fit sentence. The Crown and defence are not expected to provide the judge with a joint recommendation when the matter returns in May for the sentencing hearing.
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