FASD & the Justice System

R. v. Morgan, 2013 BCPC 99 (Gulbransen J.)

Guilty plea by Aboriginal co-accused (Bamberry) to home invasion robbery offence while masked – no overt violence against pregnant occupant and teenaged son – no definite diagnosis but extremely likely suffers from FASD, problems coping in school, troubled childhood – minor record – unlikely prison sentence would serve deterrent value – needs structure, dignity, some sort of education, job, presence in the community, self-esteem and none of these will be achieved in prison – denunciation, deterrence and separation are paramount, rehabilitation significant but lesser – Bamberry with lower moral culpability than co-accused, in some ways he has no ultimate control over his actions – drifted into world where accepted – need for structure, sense of purpose, sense of dignity, self-esteem – prison will give him sense of structure, allow him to find out more about himself and his background and get a sense of what he can do with his life – 6 years jail (co-accused 7 years jail)