Penticton man accused of pimping stepdaughter testifies

Penticton man accused of pimping and sexually assaulting stepdaughter testifies in court.

Tears flowed from the Penticton man accused of prostituting his step daughter as he testified on Wednesday.

The 47-year-old man who cannot be named in order to protect the identity of the girl, is facing 10 charges including sexual assault, living off the avails of prostitution and an adult or guardian procuring sexual activity.

The trial resumed from June with Crown counsel Wendy Kavanagh resting the Crown’s case and defence lawyer James Pennington calling the accused man to the stand. The stepfather vehemently denied ever having any sexual contact with the girl throughout the questioning. He called his stepdaughter his “best friend” and broke down in tears at one point when talking about the broken relationship between him and his stepchildren.

“I hate talking about them because it brings too many emotions. I can’t believe what is going on,” said the man referring to the charges.

The stepfather shed light on what the family’s life was like during the years they bounced from Osoyoos, Penticton, Okanagan Falls, Edmonton and the Vancouver area. The stepfather admitted he occasionally held down a job, but the bulk of his income came from dealing pot, cocaine and heroin. He said the family had no privacy as family and friends constantly were moving into their home to live with them. At one point, when they lived in Osoyoos, up to 10 people resided in their three bedroom home.

Several times the stepfather denied having every touched his stepdaughter, having sex with her or offering her drugs in return for sexual favours. Some of the claims that came from witnesses that testified earlier in the trial in June. The stepfather asked if that activity had been going on why hadn’t any of the people that had been living with them off and on in the different residences call the police on him.

“This is my daughter and I don’t know what world you live in, but if I noticed (expletive) like that  I would have called the cops,” said the stepfather.

The stepfather said he decided they needed to get away from Penticton and said his common law wife and stepdaughter and himself each packed a backpack and left for Vancouver. “Dead broke” when they arrived, he said they panhandled to survive, eventually getting back on their feet and holding down jobs while living in the Bollywood Motel in Surrey.

It wasn’t until the family moved back to Penticton from Vancouver that he said he found out his stepdaughter was prostituting. He said it was Spring Break and he took his stepdaughter to Surrey to pick up heroin to bring back to sell. He told the court his stepdaughter said she was going to visit friends while he took care of his business. He left from meeting his heroin supplier and heard a police officer holler his name. The stepfather said he turned a corner around a building and heard his name again and then saw another police car with his daughter sitting in the back seat. He said the police officer informed him they had found a crack pipe on the girl and she was suspected of prostituting. The stepfather said he and the girl got into “a war over that” and she cried promising to not do it again if he didn’t tell her mother. He agreed and told the court he was scared of losing his stepdaughter and best friend, just as he did the other stepchildren who had moved out.

He claimed the girl did not stop once they returned to Penticton and the school became involved, meeting with the girl and her parents about her absence from classes and to talk about sightings of her at the Soupateria bus stop — a well-known place for sex-trade workers to hang out. The stepfather said he couldn’t stop his teenage daughter.

“I knew I couldn’t stop it but I had to make sure she was safe,” he said. “She is 17-years-old she can pretty much do what she wants.”

He made efforts to record licence plates and makes of vehicles she got into but said he did not know if she was going on dates or selling marijuana.

“I got her selling weed so maybe she wouldn’t do prostitution. At least if you go to jail its for weed, whoop de (expletive),” said the stepfather.

The stepfather admitted he only got involved in the girl’s prostitution business on two occasions, once to relay a message on price to his stepdaughter and to one person who owed the girl money. Undercover RCMP officers testified earlier in the trial they documented the stepfather sitting at a picnic table at a local park with the girl and one of the John’s. The John then got up and left with the girl, later returning. The stepfather told the court on Wednesday that he never sat at a picnic table with that John and said he had only gone with the girl to the park so she could go into the John’s apartment to sell weed.

More evidence will be heard on Thursday at Penticton provincial court. Visit www.pentictonwesternnews.com Thursday afternoon for more on this trial or see Friday’s edition of the Penticton Western News.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders sits in on a COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, B.C. minister of health. (Birinder Narang/Twitter)
PHOTOS: Bernie Sanders visits B.C. landmarks through the magic of photo editing

Residents jump on viral trend of photoshopping U.S. senator into images

The Keremeos Grist Mill and Gards is preparing for another season of their Pantry Share program, distributing monthly packages with preserves like the one taken in the photo above. (Grist Mill Facebook)
Shares in heritage community garden program go on sale

The Grist Mill and Gardens in Keremeos is bringing back its Pantry Share for 2021

Expect cold weather and snow over the weekend. (Submitted photo)
Prepare for subzero weekend in South Okanagan

Expect some snow to start falling Saturday night and into Sunday

Skaha Middle School
Arrest made in indecent acts near Penticton schools

A 32-year-old man was arrested and released on strict conditions, say police

Flooding has become a reality for many communities in the Okanagan Valley as the region faces more extreme weather storms, blamed on the impact of climate change. (File photo)
Okanagan high target for spring flooding

Higher snowpack and mild winter precipitation levels raise concerns for Canada’s insurance industry

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders sits in on a COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, B.C. minister of health. (Birinder Narang/Twitter)
PHOTOS: Bernie Sanders visits B.C. landmarks through the magic of photo editing

Residents jump on viral trend of photoshopping U.S. senator into images

A COVID-19 exposure has been confirmed at Black Mountain Elementary in Kelowna Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. (Google Image)
Another COVID-19 exposure confirmed at Kelowna school

Interior Health confirmed an exposure at Black Mountain Elementary School Saturday

Members of BCEHS Station 343 in Lake Country receive a donation of treats and wine from the community in December. (Contributed)
‘Unexpected and heartwarming’: Okanagan community supports paramedics

Cards, discounts, treats, more given to Lake Country paramedics in sign of support

A 75-year-old aircraft has been languishing in a parking lot on the campus of the University of the Fraser Valley, but will soon be moved to the B.C. Aviation Museum. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Vintage military aircraft moving from Chilliwack to new home at B.C. Aviation Museum

The challenging move to Vancouver Island will be documented by Discovery Channel film crews

The North Okanagan Naturalists' Club completed its annual swan and eagle counts Sunday, Jan. 17, 2021. (Claude Rioux - NONC photo)
North Okanagan bird count shows decrease in swan and eagle numbers

Trumpeter swans were down 61 per cent from last year’s count; eagles down 14 per cent

Okanagan Indian Band Chief Byron Louis has served as the band’s chief since his first of six electoral wins in 1991. (File photo)
Okanagan Indian Band seeks nominations for upcoming election

A new OKIB chief and council will be elected March 30, 2021

Lake Country firefighters helped deliver a healthy newborn baby Thursday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Pixabay)
Lake Country firefighters help deliver baby boy

Firefighters from the Winfield hall assisted with the birth of a healthy newborn Thursday morning

A video posted to social media by Chilliwack resident Rob Iezzi shows a teenager getting kicked in the face after being approached by three suspects on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (YouTube/Rob i)
VIDEO: Security cameras capture ‘just one more assault’ near B.C. high school

Third high-school related assault captured by Chilliwack resident’s cameras since beginning of 2021

An individual at Rutland Senior Secondary school has tested positive for COVID-19. (Aman Parhar/Omineca Express)
Individual at Central Okanagan school tests positive for COVID-19

Authorities say the person is self-isolating at home with support from local health teams

Most Read