SUMMERSIDE — A 36-year-old Prince County man caught videotaping a teenage girl through her bedroom window was sentenced Wednesday to two years of probation.
Raymond Shane Thomas had earlier pleaded guilty to voyeurism and was in Summerside provincial court for sentencing.
Facts of the case were also detailed, indicating RCMP were contacted in April to investigate after receiving a report that Thomas had been watching the girl from outside her home as she was getting dressed after showering. It was suspected Thomas was taking video and photos of the girl.
“I would like to take this moment to apologize to the victim for the hurt I caused her. She didn’t deserve or ask for this,” said Thomas moments before being sentenced.
“I’m very sorry for what I have done to her.”
Thomas first denied the allegations but later admitted to watching and recording her on three occasions, telling police he wanted to die and that, because of his actions, his life was over.
Thomas told police that since he was a child he had impulses to watch people, adding he never wanted to hurt anyone and, until this happened, he had
been able to control his impulses.
He had no previous record.
His attorney, Matthew MacFarlane, detailed the pre-sentence report, which confirmed Thomas’ aversion to voyeurism and issues with obsessive-compulsive disorder and anxiety, for which he is currently taking medication.
MacFarlane also noted that since the incident Thomas has taken steps to deal with what he called an addiction and has sought counselling and is attending support group meetings.
“He is really and literally racked with guilt and remorse for his actions,” said the defence attorney, who noted Thomas lost his job as a result of what happened.
MacFarlane noted Thomas’ counsellor indicated Thomas is a low risk to reoffend.
The Crown and defence recommended suspending the passing of sentence, to which Judge Jeff Lantz agreed, referring to Thomas’ positive pre-sentence report and letters of support filed with the court.
“Obviously he has some issues to work on and, to his credit, he has taken steps already,” said Lantz.
During his 24 months on probation, Thomas must stay away from the victim, write her a letter of apology, not have unsupervised contact with girls under the
age of 16 and undergo assessment, counselling and treatment for any mental health issues, including, if ordered, sexual deviance assessment.
He must also register, for 10 years, under the Sex Offender Information Registration Act.