A staged robbery involving a Saskatoon couple has landed the boyfriend with a six-month community sentence.
On May 26, police charged Braden Odishaw, 25, with an armed robbery at the HomeSense on Clarence Avenue South that happened two days earlier. It was replaced with a charge of theft under $5,000 once the Crown learned the details of the incident.
Court heard how Odishaw gave a note to his girlfriend, who was working the till, that said he was robbing the store. She gave him $200 and then gave false information to police, prosecutor Barbara Herder said.
Odishaw is a severe drug addict with a drug debt of $10,000, court heard. He was also sentenced for stealing a snowboard from his brother, breaching his condition that he not take drugs and uttering a death threat to his grandfather.
Defence lawyer Barbara Degenstein pointed out that Odishaw’s addiction was a factor in all the offences, The threats charge stemmed from an intervention planned by his grandparents on Oct. 4. Odishaw got angry and grabbed a knife, threatening to kill himself and anyone who tried to stop him. His grandfather was eventually able to take the knife away from his grandson.
While his criminal record includes drug trafficking and possession of stolen property, Herder said Odishaw has been able to follow conditions for the most part. A pre-sentence report shows that despite having family support, Odishaw has never successfully completed a drug treatment program and is considered a high risk to re-offend.
Degenstein said her client would go straight from court to an inpatient treatment program if he could. He wants to turn his life around, especially since recently becoming a father, she told the court.
“This guy’s an addict. I want to see him get help,” Judge Barry Morgan said when considering the Crown and defence’s joint-submission.
He ordered Odishaw to pay back the $200 he stole from HomeSense and gave him a six-month conditional sentence order, essentially a jail sentence served in the community under strict conditions. If the offender breaches those conditions, he’d likely go straight to jail, Morgan said.
After those six months, Odishaw will be on probation for one year. His conditions include staying away from his brother and grandparents unless they initiate contact. He also must seek treatment for his addictions and mental health issues, which court heard are closely connected.
Odishaw thanked the judge for not sending him to jail and giving him another chance.
“I’m utterly embarrassed of myself and my actions,” he wrote in a letter read aloud in court.
“I tried to fool myself into thinking that I didn’t have a drug addiction. All I want is a chance to better myself and be there for my son.”