No jail for man who spread photos of alleged Pitt Meadows rave rape
CTV British Columbia
Published Monday, March 4, 2013 3:04PM PST
Last Updated Monday, March 4, 2013 10:10PM PST
A man charged with sharing pictures of the alleged gang rape of a 16-year-old girl at a Pitt Meadows rave three years ago will not serve any time in jail.
Judge Shenni Dossa handed 21-year-old Dennis Warrington a conditional discharge and 18 months’ probation Monday after the accused pleaded guilty to distributing obscene material.
Warrington uploaded three pictures of the alleged sexual assault on his Facebook page on Sept. 10, 2010, the day after the rural party known as “Another Night in Bangkok.”
The victim and her father, neither of whom can be named to protect her identity, spoke to reporters outside the Port Coquitlam courthouse Monday to say they were happy to have the trial over with.
“It feels good after two and a half years that it’s finally over,” she said. “I learned that I’m a lot stronger than I ever thought I was, that I can get through pretty much anything. I mean I got through this.”
“She’s a different person today, and you know it’s obviously changed her,” her father said. “For the rest of her life, she’s going to have to be dealing with this and going through it. Same with us.”
Judge Dossa added an unusual condition to Warrington’s sentence, ordering the young man to send a letter to anyone he knows who is still harassing the victim online.
Since the allegations arose, the teenage girl has been subjected to online slurs; at one point a Facebook group was created purely to cast doubt on her story.
“A lot of [Warrington’s] personal friends were the ones really, really, really badgering her and bullying her on Facebook,” the victim’s father said.
Mounties believe the teenager was sexually assaulted by multiple assailants in front of as many 12 onlookers. Only one man has been charged with sexual assault and the count was stayed last year, but the victim has stood firm in her accusations.
She held a press conference last February to say she was devastated that prosecutors did not proceed with the case.
“No one in their right state of mind, including myself, would let something like that happen willingly,” she said.
Mounties said a “code of silence” among witnesses stymied their ability to investigate.
One other person has so far been convicted in the case; a 17-year-old was sentenced to 12 months’ probation last year, also for distributing obscene material.
The teenager said he took pictures of the incident and shared them because he got caught up in the moment.
With a report from CTV British Columbia’s Julia Foy