By Delon Shurtz - Lethbridge Herald on January 11, 2024.
A southern Alberta woman avoided fines, but not jail after she pleaded guilty this week in Lethbridge court of justice to several criminal offences.
Tiffany Erin Genereaux, 30, pleaded guilty to break and enter and assault, for which she was sentenced to 15 days in jail on each charge. The Crown had recommended Genereaux receive 30 days in jail for each offence, for a total of two months, but defence argued that, given the circumstances, the sentence was too long, and Justice Grace Auger agreed.
Genereaux also pleaded guilty to charges of obstructing a peace officer, causing a disturbance, possession of stolen property and theft. Although the Crown recommended small fines for the offences, and defence suggested his client be allowed to serve the default time of one day in jail, served by her court appearance, Auger chose to place Genereaux on probation for a year.
Two of the offences, break and enter and causing a disturbance, are nearly three years old. On March 15, 2021 Genereaux and another person used a pry bar to break into a residential garage on 6 Avenue South.
“Police responded in a few moments and found the garage door was opened,” explained Crown Prosecutor Bob Morrison. He said it looked like the door had been pried upward, and police noticed an open window, as well.
“They could hear two people whispering, and when they opened the door they observed Miss Genereaux, along with another individual, who were both in the garage and they were arrested.
The other person, Morrison pointed out, is the son of the property owner, but they had a “falling out” and the offender was not allowed on the property. The man previously pleaded guilty to break and enter and received a 90-day jail sentence.
Later the same year, on Nov. 16, police were called to the McDonalds restaurant on Mayor Magrath Drive North, where Genereaux and another woman had been in the bathroom for about an hour and refused to leave.
“(They) seemed to be using the bathroom as a shower to clean themselves and also to clean some clothes in the sink,” Morrison said.
He added that Genereaux became involved in a shouting match with the manager and at one point shouted the “N word” at the employee.
Police found Genereaux nearby shortly afterward, and when police asked her name, she gave them two other names, instead.
“She had multiple warrants for her arrest at that time, which perhaps suggests why she was trying to pass herself off as someone else.”
Genereaux was in trouble again in December 2022 after police were called to a store in relation to the theft of a $419 backpack. Three days later police responded to a complaint of “unwanted” people in a backyard, and Genereaux was in possession of the stolen backpack. She told police she bought it from a stranger for $20. The original price tag was still attached.
“I think that would suggest to pretty much anyone who was buying it, that it was stolen property.”
On May 17, 2023 Genereaux was arrested after assaulting a former partner near the downtown public library. The victim was sitting beside a tree when Genereaux came up behind her and punched her in the head several times.
The remaining theft charge stems from another incident at the library on Nov. 17, 2023. While a woman was asleep, Genereaux stole her purse and later claimed evil spirits were taking everyone’s bags. After some involvement with the police, the purse was returned to its owner.
Although sentenced to a total of 30 days in jail, Genereaux was given credit for the equivalent of 29 days spent in remand custody, leaving one day to serve. As part of her probation, she is prohibited from going to McDonald’s on Mayor Magrath Drive North and from having any contact with the assault victim. She is also required to take counselling for substance abuse and domestic violence.