A Stephenville woman was sentenced to 90 days in jail for attempting to intimidate a witness, fraud and breach of probation on Wednesday.
The sentence against Kimberley Ann Hefferan, 35, was handed down by Judge Wayne Gorman in provincial court in Stephenville. Hefferan will serve the time on an intermittent basis.
According to Gorman’s written decision the attempt to intimidate a witness dates back to April 14, 2013. At the time a woman who had provided a statement to police in relation to an incident involving Hefferan’s son was walking down Main Street in Stephenville.
Hefferan drove past the woman in her vehicle and shouted an obscenity at her. Hefferan then stopped her vehicle and got out. She approached the woman and began yelling at her.
The woman’s partner and two children were with her and she asked her partner to remove the children. As he was doing so Hefferan stuck the woman and a struggle ensued.
The woman was able to retreat to a nearby Tim Hortons and Hefferan continued to scream at her from the parking lot.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police were called and upon arrival Hefferan was still screaming at the woman.
At the time Hefferan was bound by a probation order issued in November 2012 that required her to keep the peace and be of good behaviour.
The incident resulted in the charge of trying to intimidate a witness, intending to provoke a state of fear in a justice system participant, under section 423.1 of the Criminal Code and a the breach of probation charge.
The fraud charge was laid following incidents that occurred between June 28 and July 1, 2013. During that time period Hefferan deposited four blank envelopes into her bank account at the Bank of Montreal in Stephenville. The envelopes indicated they contained a total of $1,900. On the four days that this occurred, Hefferan withdrew $1,480, but her account did not have this money in it.
A pre-sentence report completed for the court indicates that Hefferan accepts responsibility for her behaviour and that she has stated that her actions were inappropriate.
The report’s author also said Hefferan was receptive to participating in the development of a rehabilitation plan to address anger management issues and concluded she was a suitable candidate for community supervision.
The Crown had sought a period of incarceration in the range of three to four months, followed by a period of probation.
Hefferan’s lawyer, Julia Smart, conceded that the seriousness of the section of the code relating to the attempted intimidation required emphasis upon deterrence and denunciation and urged Gorman to impose a sentence which also emphasized rehabilitation.
In his decision Gorman said “this is a very lenient disposition and one significantly lower than what will be normally imposed for a breach of section 423.1 of the Criminal Code.”
In addition to the jail sentence, Gorman also placed Hefferan on probation for a period of two years.