A former Okanagan jail employee who taught respect in relationships course, and the son of a former member of Parliament for Pitt Meadows-Maple Ridge-Mission has skipped a criminal record on charges relating to a domestic assault.
Marc Sheldon Peter Kamp was charged with two counts of assault, and was scheduled for trial Thursday morning, but entered a guilty plea in Penticton’s courthouse.
Due to the domestic nature of the crime, the Western News has chosen not to publish the circumstances of the assault nor the victim’s name, but to say Kamp kicked in a door to enter a room the victim occupied, and that a child was present.
Kamp is a former jail employee, working in three separate jails in B.C., including the Okanagan Correctional Facility, where he worked in a supervisor’s role. Defence lawyer Don Skogstad told the court Kamp would not be able to return to that job in light of the charges.
During his time working in jails, Kamp taught respectful relationship courses, which Judge Gregory Koturbash said was particularly disappointing when considering Kamp’s domestic violence outburst.
Randy Kamp, Conservative MLA for Pitt Meadows-Maple Ridge-Mission between 2004 and 2015, is the father of Marc Kamp, according to Skogstad.
Skogstad described the incident as “out of character,” and fuelled by alcohol, for which Kamp has reportedly been getting treatment, and Kamp has been sober for some time.
“His counselling has helped him understand better and avoid (violence) in the future,” Skogstad said.
Present in court was Kamp’s first wife, who had previously confirmed with Skogstad that there were never any incidents of domestic violence in their 13 years of marriage.
Skogstad noted a perceived infidelity, but Judge Gregory Koturbash was not forgiving of that circumstance, telling the court he saw it as far from an excuse for his behaviour.
“In fact, as I see it, it increases the need to make general deterrence a more prominent factor in sentencing,” Koturbash said.
“When things go sideways in a relationship, I think the message has to be loud and clear to people that they cannot resort to physical violence regardless of how challenging they find situations that they are in.”
However, Koturbash did note Kamp’s efforts to correct his ways by quitting drinking and attending counselling on a weekly basis, and accepted an open apology in court as being sincere.
The Crown was seeking a suspended sentence, while defence was seeking a conditional discharge. Both would mean no time in custody, with a probation period, but a conditional discharge would release Kamp from any criminal convictions.
Koturbash noted it was rare to see a conditional discharge in domestic situations, “especially given the prevalence of violence against women and the responsibility of the court to protect women from violent assaults.”
“However, there are exceptions, and the overriding principle in every sentencing must be that the sentence is appropriate for the offender and the circumstances, and that it is proportionate to the gravity of the offence.”
Koturbash said he was satisfied that all conditions for approving a conditional discharge were met in Kamp’s case, and handed him a 12-month probation period with no criminal record.