A suspect who pleaded guilty in relation to a shooting in Inverness Co. has been sentenced to a three-and-a-half year term, followed by 30 months of probation.
RCMP say a 34-year-old man suffered non-life-threatening injuries after he was shot in the leg at a home on Hwy. 252 in Skye Glen June 2, 2017.
James Edwin Tyler Goswell, 34, of Stewartdale, who was arrested as he walked out from a wooded area within two kilometres of the scene the afternoon following the shooting, originally faced an aggravated assault count, seven weapons-related charges and a drug count; he pleaded guilty to aggravated assault and weapon possession in December.
His remaining charges were withdrawn.
Goswell had a sentencing hearing in Port Hawkesbury Provincial Court June 4.
Crown and defence lawyers made a joint sentencing recommendation of three-and-a-half years in prison- minus a year-and-a-half credit for time already served- followed by 30 months of probation; the judge in the case, who took time to review similar cases submitted by the Crown, reserved her decision.
The hearing continued following adjournment June 14, when the judge accepted the duration of the joint-recommendation, meaning Goswell will serve two years moving forward, as part of the three-and-a-half year sentence, followed by 30 months of probation.
Crown attorney Thomas Kayter tells The Hawk despite reviewing about 20 similar cases with a standard range of 4-to-8 years, there were some differences compared to this matter.
“Those are cases where a trial was held, a contested sentencing was held,” he says. “That’s not the case here- we have an early guilty plea, we recognize in every prosecution there’s inherent risks that we recognize specific risks to this case itself; there were challenges.”
Conditions include keeping the peace, reporting to a probation officer, reporting to Wellness Court and to not have any contact with the victim, except for the purposes of Restorative Justice programming.
Another condition accepted by the judge is that Goswell is banned for life for possessing restricted or prohibited weapons, as well as a 10-year ban on non-restricted firearms; eligibility following the period will be reviewed.
Kayter says the fact that victim and family members want Goswell back in their community speaks to their character firstly, but also possibly the convict’s.
“The victim’s views and support for this process and this type of sentence is consistent with the Tyler Goswell who they once knew, and perhaps believe that he can become again.”
Kayter says addictions were the underlying cause of the violence, but Goswell took many steps to address addictions issue since being remanded.
The presiding judge, although stating she understood the request, declined a Crown recommendation that Goswell does not have any physical contact with his brother; Kayter said this was put forward as there were concerns relating to rehabilitation efforts.
Justin Francis Goswell, 28, of Judique, who was arrested at the scene shortly after the shooting, was originally charged with three firearms counts and a drug offence; he entered guilty pleas to weapon possession, careless storage of a firearm and possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking in December.
His remaining charges were withdrawn, and he was sentenced to three years and 10 months in federal prison, minus 11 months of time-and-a-half credit for time already served, during a sentencing hearing in January.
He also received a lifetime firearms ban.
The two brothers, who have been in custody since their arrests, both had their bail applications denied following hearings in June 2017.
Makayla Sutherland, 22, of Harbourview, who was charged with a count of possession for the purpose of trafficking in the case, was released from custody; her charge was withdrawn in December.