Sentencing adjourned to Tuesday for man guilty of assault, robbery

Crown calls for federal prison sentence in case of Harley David Coleman, 21

Published on February 24, 2014
Scales of justice

Sentence has been adjourned until Tuesday in the case of a 21-year-old Charlottetown man who pleaded guilty in provincial court Friday to robbery, assaulting a police officer, and several other offences.

Harley David Coleman entered the guilty pleas before Judge Nancy Orr.

The most serious of the charges to which he pleaded guilty stems from an incident in which Coleman attempted to rob a taxi driver.

The court was told the taxi driver had picked up Coleman and taken him to a specific location. When the driver asked to be paid Coleman threatened him with a syringe.

The driver left his vehicle and called police.

Coleman was charged with assault for biting two police officers who subsequently tried to arrest him.

Crown counsel Jeff MacDonald classified Coleman’s conduct as high-end violent behaviour. The Crown has called for a global sentence in the range of three years in a federal correctional facility.

Should Orr impose a sentence in that range, Coleman has expressed the desire to serve that sentence in a federal correctional facility in Manitoba, where he is originally from.

Coleman’s defence counsel has asked the court to consider a lesser sentence than that proposed by the Crown but accepts that a lengthy sentence is required.

Clare Henderson noted her client has experienced problems with drug and alcohol abuse for some time. Henderson observed that Coleman has had a difficult life, experiencing both sexual assault and physical abuse as a child.

Coleman has taken full responsibility for his actions and is sorry for what he’s done, Henderson told the court.

She said Coleman does not want to follow the same path as his father, Hartley Coleman, who has a long history of criminal behaviour. In addition to the charges upon which he is to be sentenced this week in Charlottetown, Coleman is also facing multiple criminal charges in Summerside.