|Ronald George Dawe, 62
Crime: Indecent sexual assault
Sentence: 2007, Dec – 12 months house arrest + 3 yrs probation + conditions
Last Location: Grand Falls-Windsor, NL
Dawe to serve one year of house arrest after pleading guilty to two counts of sexual assault
Ronald George Dawe (right) is pictured leaving the Grand Falls-Windsor provincial court house with an unnamed man. He will not be going to jail for sexually assaulting two teenage sisters in the 1970s, but rather will be serving a conditional sentence in
Ronald George Dawe, 62, pleaded guilty to two counts of indecent assault against two teenage girls in the 1970s, but he won¹t be going to jail.
Instead, he¹s been given a conditional sentence of two consecutive six-month terms, for a total of one year, to be served in his central Newfoundland community.
Judge R.J. Whiffen acknowledged that he handed down the sentence with some trepidation.
“Sexual assaults, by their very nature, are repugnant and I find the request for a conditional sentence to be offensive in some respects,” Whiffen said.”I suggest that Mr. Dawe¹s remorsefulness is highly questionable and his respect for females, in general, I would suspect, is low on the totem pole.”
The assaults took place between 1976-1979 in central Newfoundland, where the teenage sisters babysat Dawe¹s children. Dawe, a teacher, was transferred to another school in the region in the early 1980s after the crime had been reported to school officials.
The victims cannot be named due to a publication ban.
Dawe also admitted to having indecently assaulted a third victim, who is now deceased.
Dawe¹s lawyer, Shawn Colbourne of Springdale, had pushed for a conditional sentence.
The two victims¹ sister, who was present in court, said the sentence was tougher than she expected, given the number of offenders who have received lighter sentences.
“But was it enough? I really can¹t tell you that I¹m satisfied with it, but unless we have something happen with our justice system as a whole, it will never change.”
She said both of her sisters now live outside the province and still have difficulty trusting people. One sister won¹t allow her own children to babysit because of what happened to her. Both sisters are receiving counselling.
The woman said that it took nearly three decades for her sisters¹ case to go through the courts – an arduous process made more difficult by the fact that several people in authority were told what had happened to the girls but took no action.
“Several times they went to people,” she said. “No one would ever take it on, no one wanted to do anything. What did they do? They moved Mr. Dawe. That was his punishment, to cover it up and push it under the rug.”
As part of his sentence, Dawe must stay in his house unless he has a medical, counselling or legal appointment, or wishes to attend church.
Once his sentence has been served, Dawe will be have to undergo a supervised three-year probation period and take part in an appropriate counselling program.
He will also be expected to write letters of apology to the victims, with copies supplied to the court, serve 50 hours of community service for each offense (100 hours total), and register in the sex offender registry.
During both the sentence and probationary periods, Dawe must not contact either victim, and is not allowed to possess or drink alcohol or frequent bars, or use any non-medical drugs.