TIMMINS, Ont. - A 13-year-old hockey player has been convicted of assault with a weapon for swinging his stick at the head of another player during a tournament in Timmins, Ont., in October.
The young offender pleaded guilty in youth court yesterday. Court heard how the youth swung his stick like a baseball bat, striking the head of a player who was standing with his back to him.
The impact left a two-inch crack in the victim’s helmet.
In a statement read in court, linesman Perry Charette told police in the 15 years he has worked as an on-ice official in all levels of hockey up to junior A, “This is the most violent incident I have seen in my experience as a referee.”
Court heard the assault occurred with about one minute left in the game. There was a stoppage in play and the accused was being ejected from the game for hitting a player from behind. The accused initially skated towards the exit gate when he suddenly swerved towards the victim and clubbed him across the back of the helmet.
The blow knocked the player to his knees.
The victim, the Crown said, complained later of “concussion-like symptoms” and was taken to hospital for observation.
The young player from Cochrane, Ont. - just north of Timmins - was arrested the following day.
Len Ellery, lawyer for the accused, pointed out to the court that the 13-year-old victim was not seriously hurt from the blow and was able to continue playing in the weekend tournament.
Judge Martin Lambert adjourned sentencing to April 12.