Scales of justice
A man who shoved his daughter's hockey coach after he didn't play the girl in the closing minutes of a friendly game won't be going to jail for the assault.
Darrell Wade Platts appeared before Chief Judge John Douglas in provincial court Thursday in Charlottetown where he pleaded guilty to assault for the March 31 incident at the Simmons Sport Centre.
Douglas gave Platts a conditional discharge.
It all stemmed from an exhibition high school girls hockey game his daughter played in for the Kinkora Regional High School team against Bluefield High School.
Crown attorney John McMillan told the court Kinkora coach David Rogers kept Platts's daughter off the ice for almost the last five minutes of the game.
The coach also switched out goalies for the third period, leaving Platts's niece on the bench.
McMillan said Platts took exception to those moves and confronted Rogers after the game, grabbed him and pushed him through a swinging door into a bathroom where Rogers fell to the floor.
"Mr. Rogers Platts essentially berated him," McMillan said.
The police took statements and Platts acknowledged there was an altercation, but rationalized his actions by saying Rogers bullied his daughter and niece by not playing them, McMillan said.
When it came to punishment for the offence, the defence requested alternative measures, which would have left Platts without a criminal record, but McMillan said the Crown denied the request.
McMillan said Platts didn't accept responsibility because he justified his actions as a father standing up for his daughter.
Although Rogers wasn't hurt, McMillan said he was scared.
"The whole thing was very ugly," McMillan said.
Defence attorney Cindy Cameron said Platts agreed he shoved Rogers, but didn't mean to push him to the ground.
Cameron said Platts was bullied as a child and so was his daughter when she was younger.
"He overreacted," Cameron said.
Platts was also facing disciplinary proceedings at work because of the incident and was awaiting the outcome of the legal proceedings to find out if he would lose his job with the provincial government.
In handing down a sentence, Douglas said he took into account Platts's guilty plea and that he expressed regret for his actions. Douglas also said Rogers falling was a foreseeable consequence of pushing him.
The judge gave Platts a conditional sentence, saying he didn't feel a criminal record was necessary.
"Often good people do stupid things, " Douglas said.
Platts has to perform 30 hours of community service or donate $10 to the P.E.I. Hockey Association for every hour he doesn't serve.
He already wrote an apology letter to Rogers.