Defence lawyer Tonii Roulston speaks to the media in Red Deer, Alta., Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

‘I am a survivor:’ Sexual assault victim tells court

The woman’s victim impact statement was read in an Alberta courtroom today

An Alberta woman who was so badly beaten during a sexual assault that she had to learn how to walk and talk again says there have been times when she wished her attacker had “finished her off.”

The woman’s victim impact statement was read in a Lethbridge courtroom at the sentencing hearing of Denzel Dre Colton Bird.

Bird, who is 21, pleaded guilty last fall to striking the then-25-year-old woman from behind with a metal pipe, dragging her into an alley and sexually assaulting her while she was walking to work in September 2016.

The blows caused multiple skull fractures and fractured her facial bones as well.

The woman, who was in a separate courtroom with her family, said she struggles with her emotions, has trouble with her balance and contracted a sexually transmitted disease from Bird.

She said her life has been changed forever.

“I am not the same person I was,” she said in her statement. “It all seems like a horrible story I went through, but I have no memory.”

However, she added that she is glad to have survived.

“I’m more alive than ever. He hasn’t taken away my will to live. I am a survivor.”

A passerby discovered the woman, partially naked and stuffed into a garbage can, and she was taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries. She was in a medically induced coma for weeks in a Calgary hospital. She was released a year ago and her family has said she continues to recover, although she has no memory of the attack.

Police have said there was no apparent connection between Bird and his victim.

Bird pleaded guilty last September to aggravated sexual assault and break and enter.

The maximum sentence for aggravated sexual assault is life in prison.

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Vanderhoof commemorates Orange Shirt Day with beading workshop

Participants can learn a traditional Métis craft at CNC Sept. 26

College of New Caledonia offers new automotive glass technician program

The program is offered mainly online, allowing more students to take part from across the north

Local business wins snow removal award

K. Leigh Precision Earthworks picked up Rookie of the Year from Western Canadian company

Todd Doherty was recognized today for his life-saving actions during a flight home

Todd Doherty, Member of Parliament for Cariboo-Prince George, was recognized today for… Continue reading

Decision on Burns Lake’s workforce camp “pending very soon”: Coastal GasLink

Meetings to discuss new camp location postponed due to wildfire situation

Conservation officer frees B.C. deer from flotation gear mishap

BC Conservation Officer Service is reminding residents to keep backyards clear of entanglements

Ottawa to name new ambassador for women, peace and security, Freeland says

Chrystia Freeland also confirmed Canada would spend about $25 million to fund number of initiatives

‘A little bright spot:’ Ottawa residents rescue dog trapped beneath rubble

Freelance journalist says rescue of a dog trapped under rubble was happy ending amid chaos in Ottawa

B.C. deaf community wants different sign languages on federal accessibility act

Advocates also want Indigenous Sign Language to be recognized on the Indigenous Language Act

VIDEO: B.C.-born firefighter remembered by MP in emotional speech

Family asks first responders to look after one another in wake of suicide, growing concerns of PTSD

Airline has ‘close call’ with drone while en route to B.C. airport

Jazz Aviation reported the drone sighting near Vancouver to the RCMP and Transport Canada

Tragic accident claims life of B.C. toddler

Fundraising effort has been created to help mom and family

B.C. nanny charged with sex abuse of 3 children

Saanich Police seek potential victims of Johnathon Lee Robichaud from Central Saanich

‘I’m no quitter’ on climate change issues, McKenna says at G7 ministers meeting

David Suzuki says if McKenna believes what she’s saying, she too should quit

Most Read