In June 2005, Vanbraeckel, who has 21 previous convictions including four for sexual assault, broke into a bar and sexually assaulted a woman who was sleeping in the office. The woman fought to free herself and suffered scrapes and bruises on her arms and legs. After a struggle, the woman escaped.Windsor, Ont. -- Dismissing an application to have Robert Vanbraeckel declared a dangerous offender, Superior Court Justice Steven Rogin sentenced the repeat sex offender Friday to eight years in prison because he doesn't think Vanbraeckel is a lost cause.
Just as court proceedings were winding down, Rogin leaned forward and spoke directly to Vanbraeckel, who was sitting in the prisoner's box.
"There will be people who'll say I made a mistake because I didn't declare you a dangerous offender," Rogin said.
"If they are right, you had better not come back in front of me."
TELL THAT TO HIS FUTURE VICTIMS
Overcome with emotion throughout the day, the victim of Vanbraeckel's latest sex assault jumped to her feet as Vanbraeckel was taken away to start serving his prison term.
"You are still going to fry in hell for what you did to me," she yelled at his back. "If I gotta pay, you're going to pay."
Vanbraeckel, 44, was found guilty in July 2006 of sexual assault, breaking and entering to commit a sexual assault and unlawful confinement, stemming from an attack on a woman in June 2005.
Vanbraeckel, a father of two, has been in jail for three years and Rogin gave him two-to-one credit for the time. So Vanbraeckel will serve two more years in prison.
A dangerous offender designation would have allowed Vanbraeckel to be incarcerated indefinitely.
In June 2005, Vanbraeckel, who has 21 previous convictions including four for sexual assault, broke into a bar and sexually assaulted a woman who was sleeping in the office. The woman fought to free herself and suffered scrapes and bruises on her arms and legs. After a struggle, the woman escaped.
In a 75-minute reading of his decision, Rogin dismissed an attempt to have Vanbraeckel declared a dangerous offender because he didn't think the Crown had proven it's case beyond a reasonable doubt.
"I do not see Mr. Vanbraeckel without hope," Rogin said. "Grabbing a breast or kiss or demanding sex from his wife doesn't indicate a pattern. While Mr. Vanbraeckel shows aggressive behaviour, I see no just cause for dangerous offender status.
"I'm not persuaded beyond a reasonable doubt."
In particular, Rogin questioned a psychological assessment that predicted Vanbraeckel had a very high probability to reoffend. Vanbraeckel did not co-operate with the assessment, so it was compiled based on court records.
Rogin took issue with the psychiatrist, who he felt ignored or dismissed evidence that Vanbraeckel was redeemable.
After losing her bid to have Vanbraeckel locked up indefinitely, prosecutor Jill Macintyre argued Vanbraeckel should get a 10-year sentence so he can access rehabilitation programs in the prison system.
Defence attorney Greg Goulin tried to get three-to-one credit for his client's time in jail or time served.
"25% of all sex offenders re-offend within 15 years"