April 18th, 2024

Man accused of sex assaults could have two trials


By Delon Shurtz - Lethbridge Herald on March 5, 2024.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDdshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

A 59-year-old Lethbridge man accused of holding two women against their will and sexually assaulting them, is still waiting to be released on bail.

Bernard Alonzo Gibson had been granted bail last month, but only on condition he could secure a bed at the Opportunity Home Treatment Recovery Centre in Drayton Valley. The accused’s matter was back in court last week where Calgary lawyer Kirsten Lancee said there was a change in his circumstances and he was still in custody, although she hopes to address his bail hearing when the matter returns to court in April.

In addition to the bail hearing, the court is also scheduled to have a severance hearing on the same day. The severance hearing will determine whether all the charges will be covered by one trial, or separated and covered by two trials; one for each complainant.

Gibson is charged with aggravated sexual assault, unlawful confinement and failure to comply with bail conditions in relation to one of the women, and assault, sexual assault and unlawful confinement in relation to the other woman.

Police reported that on May 18 of last year officers went to a residence in the 1500 block of 16 Avenue South after receiving a report from the landlord that there was an injured woman in the basement. EMS transported the 30-year-old victim to Chinook Regional Hospital, where she was admitted for treatment of extensive injuries.

Police reported that the woman met a man earlier in the month outside of Lethbridge and was driven into the city. She was taken to the southside home, unlawfully confined and repeatedly sexually assaulted for four days. While police were at the home conducting an investigation, a man matching the suspect’s description returned and was arrested without incident.

Another woman was also held against her will and assaulted for two days in March, 2023 before she was able to escape.

Gibson pleaded not guilty to all the charges in November, and elected to be tried in Alberta Court of Justice.

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biff

keep this nasty guy locked up until trial. any rehab should take place entirely whilst incarcerated. are the victims unworthy? are the crimes not violent enough? am i among to the too few that feel violent crime is not being dealt with any reasonable measure of respect for victims, society, and so as to deter violent acts one upon another?



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