MOOSE JAW — A chance encounter on the street between Colewyn Terrell Montana and two brothers started as a verbal altercation and morphed into a fight that included a knife.
Montana, 21, was walking past a business on the 0 block of Manitoba Street West on July 8, 2022, around 10:20 p.m. when he bumped into one of the men and began arguing with him. This turned into punching and shoving between the two before the other brother broke up the fight, Crown prosecutor Rob Parker said recently in Moose Jaw Provincial Court.
However, Montana and the second brother then began fighting with each other. Montana noticed a knife on the ground nearby — it wasn’t his — but picked it up and slashed at the second brother. This caused a minor cut on the man’s left arm that was not life-threatening and needed only stitches.
Even though no major injuries occurred — especially to important internal organs — this was still a serious incident, said Parker.
“Anytime a knife is produced … (and) an individual uses a knife in an altercation, there (can) be very tragic and unplanned results,” he added.
During his court appearance by video, Montana pleaded guilty to one count of assault causing bodily harm. As part of a joint submission, the man received a nine-month conditional sentence order (CSO) — jail served in the community, also called house arrest — that included several conditions.
Some conditions include keeping the peace and being of good behaviour, obeying a curfew from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., not possessing or consuming drugs or alcohol or visiting a place that sells such products, providing a breath or urine sample when requested, taking counselling, not being near the second brother, not possessing a weapon and providing a DNA sample.
The Crown also stayed two other charges.
Police originally charged Montana with aggravated assault, which would have resulted in automatic jail, but the guilty plea to a lesser or included offence of assault causing bodily harm ensures that won’t happen, defence lawyer Estes Fonkalsrud.
The incident is unfortunate, but a review of the evidence suggests the two brothers instigated the assault on Montana, the lawyer continued. However, Montana wasn’t claiming self-defence because he acknowledged there was a break in the assault and he re-engaged in the fight.
“There could have been much more serious consequences, luckily, but medical treatment (ensured) the victim was able to recover,” Fonkalsrud said.
Montana was on employment insurance but is now working, while his future looks good, the defence lawyer added. If the man breaches his CSO, he will return to court and likely spend the rest of that order in jail.
Judge Brian Hendrickson accepted the joint submission and imposed a victim surcharge of $100 on Montana.