Man imprisoned for brutal attack

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The judge said what Lyle Shipman did when he beat up a stranger and left him for dead in a downtown London courtyard was “senseless” and “extremely violent.”

And for that brutal attack on Scott Gooder two years ago, and the safety of the community, the 21-year old Indigenous man with a troubled background was handed a 4½-year prison sentence for aggravated assault.

Once his pre-sentence time in jail was factored in, Shipman was told he has 19 months left to serve.

Superior Court Justice Jonathon George said during his sentencing decision Wednesday that if the violence Shipman inflicted on Gooder “was commonplace, it would put people on edge and make people fearful to be out and about.”

Some of the violence was shown in a surveillance video played when Shipman pleaded guilty in February. Gooder, 47, had wandered into the courtyard during the early morning of Aug. 29, 2015, wearing a backpack and carrying a shopping bag and a cellphone.

Shipman walked up to Gooder, punched him in the face, then kicked him. After Gooder fell to the ground, Shipman stomped on him several times, before taking some of Gooder’s possessions.

Moments later, Shipman returned to Gooder and assaulted him again.

Gooder suffered a severe head injury and two long cuts to his face made by a sharp-edged weapon. A razor blade and a utility knife were found near Gooder when he was discovered by a security officer at the courtyard, but his hat and cellphone were gone.

He was taken to hospital close to death and had to be sedated at hospital.

Gooder’s blood was found later on Shipman’s shoes.

The photos of Gooder’s injuries were “shocking and very upsetting,” George said.

A Gladue report — a specialized pre-sentence report for Aboriginal offenders — was prepared in Shipman’s case, though George noted Shipman wasn’t a reluctant participant, making “this process not as fulsome as it could have been.”

Shipman’s grandmother is a residential school survivor and Shipman was often in the care of child welfare services.

He survived on a welfare payments and “drugs have clearly been a distinctive force in his life” along with mental illness, George said.

Shipman’s record includes a robbery conviction that sent him to jail for 10 months.

George said he is worried about what Shipman will do once he is released and feared he will return to drugs and alcohol if he doesn’t seek out help.

“If that happens, we will be right back here,” George said. “Of that I am certain.”  

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