Penticton man sentenced to two years for his role in attack

Richard Labonte broke into a Penticton woman's home and threatened to kill her family

Alcohol is no excuse for an assault, Judge Gregory Korturbash told a Penticton man last week.

Richard Labonte received two years less a day of jail time on Thursday for breaking and entering and possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose for a strange incident that took place last November.

“Mr. Labonte did a very stupid series of actions like he had a black cloud over his head and loser stamped in his forehead,” said defence counsel Tom Johnston.

The court heard that Labonte had been consuming alcohol with others in the Three Gables apartments when he dropped his pants in front of a woman in the hallway. The pair got into a verbal altercation which escalated when the woman hit Labonte in the face and then retrieved a paring knife from her apartment which she just held in her hand. The exchange ended with the woman retreating to her apartment and Labonte threatening that while he would not physically hurt a woman, he knew a woman that would do it for him for $50. Later that evening, Labonte returned with Maureen Bourque and forcibly opened the women’s apartment door. Bourque carried a knife and Labonte grabbed a long bar that was behind the women’s door.

The women’s sons were also in the apartment and testified that Labonte said he was “going to kill your family.”

The 17-year-old son said Labonte came at him with the bar and pushed it into his chest. The son then pushed Labonte back and ran to his mother’s assistance. He testified Bourque tried stabbing his mother but missed and he pushed Bourque away.

The court heard during the trial that the son and mother barricaded the door and Bourque continued to stab through an opening. RCMP arrived shortly after.

Defence counsel said Labonte did not know that Bourque, with whom he has children with, had the knife and that he was so drunk he did not realize what was happening.

Crown counsel Catherine Crockett was asking for a four- to five-year jail sentence but defence argued that it was a “grossly disproportionate sentence” compared to Bourque, who received 90-day intermittent sentence.

Labonte apologized in court for his actions and claimed he did not know children were in the apartment.

 

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