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Canadian Female Pedophile Jennifer Heidman, Jailed For 2 Years For Multiple Child Sex Crimes

Posted on: October 8, 2009

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Canadian Female Pedophile Jennifer Heidman, Jailed For 2 Years For Multiple Child Sex Crimes

September 30th 2009

A sexually predatory husband and wife, who have both been behind bars since their arrest in June 2008, are now prison-bound for the crimes they committed against children in Kingston.

Patrick J. Heyman was given a 12 1 /2-year sentence and his wife, Jennifer Heidman, is going away for two years, to be followed by probation for three years after that.

The sentences were urged on Superior Court Justice Douglas Belch as part of a joint recommendation worked out between lawyers on both sides.

In adopting their sentencing suggestions, Belch said: “I note that one of the (victim) children wrote to me: ‘Help me not to see them any more. I’m scared’.”

He also disclosed that the mother of one of the victims had observed in her victim impact statement that Heyman and Heidman have taken the innocence of their victims. Her daughter, she told the judge, is plagued by nightmares because of them.

In presenting their joint-submission to Belch this week, assistant Crown attorney John Skoropada also observed that the couple’s criminal behaviour “has caused a great deal of pain and will continue to cause a great deal of pain for a number of people,” especially the children involved. He acknowledged that the courts have no power to heal those wounds, but told the judge, “I think we can give them and their parents some assurance that they will be protected,” from Heyman and his wife.

Heyman, 32, and Heidman, 25, both pleaded guilty in front of Belch in June, admitting to multiple sex crimes against six children — girls and boys — between January 2004, and their arrest last summer.

Belch was told that only one of victims had entered her teens when she was targeted by the pair. The majority were still juveniles.

Heidman ended up pleading guilty to four crimes in total: three counts of sexual assault, where the victims were two young boys and a girl all under 13 at the time, and one count of assisting her husband in creating pornographic images of the children.

Belch, who had to view the resulting photos as part of the evidence in the case, characterized them as “simply disgusting,” before ordering them returned to Kingston Police under seal.

Heyman, has two prior convictions for sexual assault, pleaded guilty this time to 10 sex crimes: The four involving his wife and six others, including a sexual assault on a girl under 10 and another who was 15 at the time; a charge of inviting the younger of the two girls to touch him sexually; inviting a boy under 10 to touch Heidman sexually; counselling an adolescent boy to engage in sex acts with a younger girl and counselling a 12-year-old girl to sexually touch an adolescent boy.

The pornography charge involved photo images of children under 18 engaged in sexual activities with each other and, in at least one case, with Heyman.

There was no suggestion that any of the images were broadcast or distributed, however. Belch was told they were recovered among the materials police seized during during a search of the couple’s Daly Street townhouse at the time of their arrest.

The couple spent 259 days in pretrial custody before entering their pleas, for which they were both given two-for-one credit amounting to about 2 1 /2 years of time served. Otherwise, Heyman would be looking at 15 years in prison and Heidman would be facing 4 1 /2 years behind bars. The delay in handing down those sentences arose from the necessity of obtaining a pre-sentence report on Heidman, who had no previous involvement with the law.

Heyman’s defence lawyer, Sean Ellacott, told Belch that now, “rehabilitation is in Mr. Heyman’s hands. It’s going to be a lot of work, for a lot of years to turn this around.” He observed, however, that the lengthy prison term should afford Heyman the time to get into the high intensity sex offender programs he needs.

Ellacott told the judge he wasn’t going to try to offer any mitigation for his client’s crimes. The facts read in and the exhibits in evidence spoke eloquently to the circumstances of those acts, he admitted.

He did suggest Heyman’s behaviour after his arrest had at least served to avoid compounding the harm. Ellacott noted that his client didn’t seek bail, waived the taking of evidence at his preliminary hearing and ultimately pleaded guilty to the crimes, which spared his young victims the necessity of testifying against him and having that testimony challenged.

“There’s nothing that can undo the damage done, but that’s the start that he had to offer,” the defence lawyer told Belch.

In addressing, Heidman’s circumstances, defence lawyer Connie Baran-Gerez emphasized prior to these charges her client had no criminal record.

There’s no evidence before the court, she told Belch, to suggest that Heyman would ever have found herself in her current circumstances without the influence of her husband.

Skoropada had already acknowledged her lesser role, telling Belch: “She was not the prime motivating force, but he also said she had a duty to the children, once she realized her husband’s predilection, to “get them out of that situation” and “to tell us.”

Still, Baran-Gerez maintained Heidman’s “moral turpitude is less than her husband’s.

She also told Belch that her client is someone who could benefit from a lengthy probation and counselling because, “without minimizing the wounds she inflicted on these children, she has wounds herself that she needs to heal.”

Belch was told when the pair originally entered their guilty pleas that Heidman met and began a relationship with Heyman in 2004, the same year he was placed on probation for two years for his previous sexual assaults.

Baran-Gerez said that her client even then suffered from depression and anxiety, however, and disclosed that she engages in self-harming behaviours such as head banging. She told the judge that while Heidman has no memory of any traumatic events from her own childhood, “she has no good memories.” The defence lawyer suggested those factors left her client particularly vulnerable to Heyman’s influence because she found love and acceptance with him.

The lawyer candidly admitted that her client “has issues and her issues could only have contributed to her lack of empathy, lack of understanding for the victims.”

Heidman chose not to address the court on her own behalf when given the opportunity.

Heyman, however, apologized to the children “for not protecting them from guys like me.”

In addition to jail, both Heyman and Heidman have been ordered to be included in the sexual offender information registry, she for 20 years and he for life. Likewise, they are both subject to court orders that bar them for life from playgrounds, school yards and various other places where children can reasonably be expected to congregate.

http://www.thewhig.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=1774995

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