WARNING: This story contains graphic and disturbing content.
An elderly Prince George man convicted of repeatedly sexually abusing his two daughters when they were young has been sentenced to a decade behind bars.
The man, whose identity is protected under a publication ban, was convicted last November of two counts of sexual intercourse without a person’s consent and two counts of indecent assault.
According to court documents released this week, the 86-year-old received his sentence in a decision that factored in his age and oncoming dementia.
The man sexually assaulted his two daughters more than 100 times, beginning as early as March 1966 and occurring until December 1979.
The father started grooming his daughters when they were not even 10 years old.
The abuse was described as unrelenting and continuous, involving threats of violence to stop the girls from telling anyone about it.
On at least one occasion, the father involved his son, giving the boy and one of the girls an “intoxicating substance” to facilitate the two having sex as other men watched, filmed and masturbated.
“If one sentence could sum up what you have done, it is this,” B.C. Supreme Court Justice Arne Silverman wrote in his sentencing decision. “You denied your daughters their childhood.”
The man’s defence lawyer argued factors such as his client’s age, his likely dementia, and that he led an “exemplary” life, since his children moved out.
The judge dismissed those as mitigating factors, saying the court only recognizes his not having a prior criminal record as one.
“You should have been prosecuted decades ago and you were not prosecuted decades ago because of the psychological harm and the threats that these young girls had lived under,” he wrote. “So I see nothing benefitting you in the so-called exemplary life that you have lived since that time.”
Crown had sought a sentence of 12 to 14 years, while defence suggested in the range of nine years.
“I take no pleasure in sentencing an elderly man to a lengthy period of imprisonment,” Silverman wrote, noting that Corrections Canada would be able to accommodate him.
“Let me tell you. If you were 60 years old instead of 86, you would be going to jail for between 15 and 20 years.”
If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. See the sexual assault fact sheet provided by Victim Services and Crime Prevention. You can also call your local police or VictimLinkBC for information and support.