Wife beater gets five-year sentence

Judge calls attack “depressingly common” in Nunavut



The Iqaluit man who viciously beat his wife for six hours with a metal pipe, a pocket knife and his bare hands was sentenced to five years in jail on June 16.

Jonah Tikivik, 34, pleaded guilty to assault causing bodily harm. He had no memory of the Sept. 6, 2002, attack because he was drunk, he said.

The woman survived the bloody ordeal but suffered a broken jaw, fractured arm, lacerated labia, broken finger and dislodged tooth. She was monitored for internal injuries.

Justice Earl Johnson called the attack “depressingly common” in Nunavut.

“The courts must denounce spousal abuse as a serious crime,” he said.

The beating began around 10 p.m. when the woman, whose identity is protected by a publication ban, returned home.

Enraged at the prospect she’d been unfaithful, Tikivik punched, kicked, slashed and attempted to choked the woman. He stripped her, threw her in a bathtub and hit her genitals with a metal pipe, the court heard.

Their children were staying at a relative’s house that night.

Police broke the door down at 4 a.m. and found the woman naked, hunched over and immobile from her injuries.

Upon his arrest, Tikivik told police his wife deserved the beating because he suspected she’d cheated on him.

Crown lawyer Ken Kehler called the attack a protracted and lengthy assault worthy of seven years in jail.

Defence lawyer Susan Cooper asked for two years less a day.

A woman in the gallery cried as the verdict was read. As Tikivik was escorted through the courthouse, she said, “I’ll wait for you.”

Tikivik will spend only four years in jail because of the 14-month credit he receives for his seven months in remand custody. Judges often give double time for time served in remand because of the overcrowded conditions and lack of treatment programs.

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