Ben Johnson Plans To Appeal Sexual Assault Conviction

An appeal in the Ben Johnson case.

Convicted of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl and sentenced to three years in prison, an appeal is being launched on behalf of the former Windsor Spitfire.

Defence Attorney Patrick Ducharme says his client stands by his testimony and quoted what Johnson said to the judge before the sentence was passed: "I'm not guilty of this offence. I am, however, concerned about all the pain this event has caused other people and I'm sorry for that but I still believe in my innocence."

Johnson maintained during the trial that he did not have intercourse with the girl and the entire incident was initiated by her.

In finding Johnson guilty, Justice Kirk Munroe said "the girl was too intoxicated to be able to give consent."

The victim's mother says putting the blame on her daughter for what she was wearing or how she was acting is not appropriate. "All that needs to change, none of that validates or gives anyone the right to assault a woman. Victim shaming happens on a daily basis and there should be zero tolerance for it."

 

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Crédit photo: Mother of Ben Johnson's sexual assault victim speaks (photo by AM800's Peter Langille)

Defence Attorney Ducharme expects the appeal to be launched immediately. 

It's not yet known if Johnson will seek to be released from custody during the appeal process.