December 9, 2013 Sections
Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION
A man who savagely beat a stranger on a summer night two years ago was given a five-year prison sentence Wednesday.
Justice Christopher Mainella described Jerry Kondratiuk as a "violent offender... who was prepared to unleash his fury on strangers," in the July 27, 2011, attack.
Kondratiuk pleaded guilty to aggravated assault for his role in the beating of a 51-year-old man on Main Street near Higgins Avenue.
Mainella accepted the joint recommendation from Crown and defence counsel of a five-year sentence, with straight credit for the two years Kondratiuk spent in custody since his arrest, leaving him with three more years in prison.
Crown prosecutor Cindy Sholdice said the victim had lost his glasses and was offering people a reward of $25 for anyone willing to help him find them.
Kondratiuk confronted the man, demanded the $25 and then attacked him without provocation, Sholdice said, adding a correctional guard who was driving by saw Kondratiuk place the victim in a headlock, take him to the ground and repeatedly punch and kick him as the victim cried for help.
"It was a savage and cruel act," Sholdice said of Kondratiuk's beating. "It was an unprovoked attack on a stranger."
Sholdice said up to five other people who were walking by joined the attack, kicking and punching the victim as Kondratiuk held him down.
Police responded to the correctional officer's 911 call and took the six attackers into custody. None of the people knew each other and all were intoxicated, including the victim.
Sholdice said sentences for similar offences ranged from four to six years. Along with Kondratiuk, two other individuals were also charged for their role in the beating. One of the co-accused was given a four-year sentence this week and the other a sentence of two years less a day.
"Decency was suspended for a period of time in this area of Winnipeg," Mainella said of the attack.
The victim suffered a broken jaw and permanent damage to his hand. He suffers from paranoia and fears crowds.
Kondratiuk was convicted in 2002 of aggravated sexual assault. He was deemed too violent to be eligible for early release and he served the entire sentence.
-- Aldo Santin
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 18, 2013 A9