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'Is this justice?' victim's question after convicted Ottawa sex offender granted parole

This decision allowed Sullivan to "emotionally take responsibility for the crime" and "explain the extent of his past crimes" before the Canadian Parole Board. , pointing out that he was the first federal criminal to appear as a Crime

File photo: Former Scout leader Donald Joseph Sullivan leaves the Ottawa courthouse in August 2019.
File photo: former Scout leader Donald Joseph Sullivan leaves Ottawa court in August 2019. Photo by Errol McGihon /Postmedia

Convicted sex offender Donald Joseph Sullivan The victim is outraged after the former Scout leader and Canadian Army officer was granted parole after serving less than half of a six-year prison sentence for sex crimes against at least 10 children.

Sullivan, now 71, was denied full parole on July 22 but was sentenced to six months in a community-based residential facility according to a Canadian Parole Board release order.

Sullivan was charged in September 2019 with 5 years of gross lewdness committed against boys while working as a volunteer Scout leader in the 1970s. two simultaneous judgments were handed down. He was also sentenced to one year in prison for a sexual assault he committed in the 1990s.

Between the date of sentencing and his July release, Sullivan served approximately two years and ten months in prison for these crimes.

"Is this justice?" one of his victims wrote in his e-mail interview after Sullivan was granted parole.

"Within five months he will be able to apply for full parole, while his victim continues to serve a life sentence," the victim wrote. "He recovered easily compared to those of us who continue to seek treatment and treatment for substance abuse."

Sullivan's 2019 criminal trial saw numerous victims told the court about the "twisted damage" Sullivan had done to them.

At the conclusion of a trial in which court prosecutors had sought his 10-year prison sentence, the judge nearly cried as he read the statements about the impact on the victims.

Ottawa Police announced in June 2018 after a victim filed a report of abuse Sullivan had been a leader of his volunteer scouts from 1972 to 1975. We have launched an investigation into Sullivan's past sex crimes.

Scout He fired Sullivan in 1977. When the police first began visiting the families of the children under his supervision, he informed them of allegations that the boys were being abused. It was not

The parole board noted that in its decision Sullivan admitted to leaving a trail of victims that did not lead to criminal charges.

Sullivan said he was court-martialed in the 1980s, where he pleaded guilty to gross obscenity while serving at the Canadian military base in Gagetown, N.B., where he was promoted to corporal. . According to

, he met and groomed his victims. Most of them were children of fellow Canadian soldiers who worked as "altar boy instructors" at the base chapel and as youth counselors in the neighboring village of Gagetown. Court martial record.

Sullivan pleaded guilty to five counts of gross obscenity, but according to those records, he appealed to four years in prison and was effectively sentenced to death in 1986 after serving one year. pardoned and released.

Nearly two decades passed before Sullivan was arrested for child sexual abuse in 2005. period, from when Sullivan was a Scout leader at age 24 to his first criminal charges at age 55.

He was sent to prison in 2005 after being convicted of assault on a minor on two counts of sexual interference and soliciting sexual contact.

Sullivan said that after his release in 2005, he spent eight years at the Royal Ottawa Hospital receiving "group cognitive-behavioral therapy" and medication to reduce sexual interest.

A psychiatric evaluation completed in January estimated Sullivan's risk of reoffending to be in the "low-to-moderate range of future sexual offenses," according to a parole board decision.

Unless he has the written approval of his parole supervisor and is accompanied by an adult who is fully aware of Sullivan's criminal record, he may not appear in the presence of a child under the age of 16. It is forbidden to

His crimes involved "inappropriate activity with children in a position of trust (of whom Sullivan was)," the Commission said, and Sullivan "has been Admitting inappropriate attraction and receiving a corresponding diagnosis.”

The Board noted the "substantial long-term damage you have caused to victims of crime."

The decision made clear that Sullivan was the first federal offender to appear on the board of directors, "emotionally responsible for the crime" and "disclosed the scope" of his past crimes.

"We have never disregarded responsibility or damage," the board's decision states. ``You took responsibility for your crime, revealed the existence of additional victims, and showed no signs of minimization.''

You have inflicted severe trauma and psychological harm and made them all suffer. You have opposed and hurt quite a few young victims, and they continue to suffer the long-term consequences of your actions," the board said. said in its decision.

Sullivan's conduct "was no problem or cause for concern" during his 34-month stay in federal prison, the board's decision said.

According to his facilitator, he has had "positive results" in prison programming, and the committee noted that Sullivan "has [his] desire to continue treatment and prescribed medication."

ahelmer@postmedia.com

Twitter.com/helmera

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