A Red Seal carpenter who fell into crack cocaine addiction will spend nearly eight more months in jail for assaulting a fellow inmate at KRCC.
David Connelly was found guilty last month of assault causing bodily harm against Stephen Still. At trial, the court heard he threw a jug of boiling water on Still following an argument in the cell they shared.
Still suffered severe burns.
Connelly was in KRCC serving time for an assault. The 37-year-old had a long criminal record but enjoyed 10 years “without any difficulty with the law,” said defence lawyer Don Campbell.
“He had the house, dog, all the trappings of the life he wanted.”
Campbell said Connelly is trained as a Red Seal carpenter, able to work as a journeyman anywhere in Canada.
But after his mother died of cancer and a break-up with his spouse, Connelly fell into crack addiction.
“He lost everything he worked those 10 years to acquire.”
He was then convicted of common assault, as well as drug possession and theft of a motor vehicle.
Provincial court judge Stella Frame sentenced Connelly to 10 months jail for the jailhouse assault. He was given credit for slightly more than two months he’s waited in custody.
Prosecutor Will Burrows asked for one year in jail, saying Connelly had time to think about the assault as he boiled the water in a KRCC kitchen.
“There’s a component of premeditation,” Frame said, adding Connelly was likely stewing over an argument between the two about 20 minutes before the assault.
The pair did not get along, but were forced to share a cell at Kamloops Regional Correctional Centre, which is operating at more than double its designed capacity.
Frame agreed Connelly had time to cool down after the dispute on April 8.
“You chose the violent route instead. But I’m not convinced it was entirely premeditated.”
Campbell said Connelly is arranging with a KRCC counsellor to attend Maple Ridge Treatment Centre for two months immediately after he serves his sentence in order to tackle his drug problems.
Since the assault, Connelly has been kept in segregation, where he is locked in his cell 23 hours a day and not permitted to mingle with other prisoners.