An appropriate cumulative sentence of 11 and ½ years is imposed for an offender found guilty for a string of offences that are violent. Despite a tenuous connection to some Indigenous heritage, a Gladue report was ordered and considered in the sentencing process.
Mr. Olson was found guilty, following a trial, of six counts contrary to the the Criminal Code from events that took place in 2017, including assault with a weapon, contrary to s 267(a); the reckless discharge of a firearm; possession of a loaded prohibited firearm (a sawed off shotgun) without a licence; possession of a firearm while prohibited; possession of stolen property in excess of $5000; and resist or wilfully obstruct a peace officer.
A Gladue report was obtained for Mr. Olson upon the Crown learning of possible Indigenous heritage. Mr. Olson, now 41, has a very lengthy criminal record, reaching back to 2001, with 58 prior convictions. Mr. Olson had a troubled childhood and felt unfairly treated by his stepfather. He recently reconnected with his mother and learned that there could be some Indigenous heritage on his mother’s side, that is a great, great grandmother, was believed to be First Nations. According to the Gladue report, Mr. Olson has six children with different mothers, and maintains some limited contact with one of his children. The Gladue report writer, noted that the Indigenous lineage could not be independently corroborated, and focussed on corrections and community resources available to Mr. Olson arising out of this somewhat tenuous connection.
It is clear from the nature of his offences and the risk of Mr. Olson reoffending that the principles of deterrence and denunciation are paramount, along with the protection of the public. However, there is a potential for rehabilitation that must also be taken into account, including considering the principles set out in s 718.2(b), (c), (d) and (e), that is, parity of sentencing, the totality principle, and restraint in imposing terms of imprisonment.
This string of offences is long and involves violence. Although there are connections between some of the counts, the indictment has a number of offences with slight or no connections. It is difficult to determine an appropriate and fair approach. Concurrent sentences are used where appropriate, but some of the sentences must necessarily be consecutive (R v M(CA),  SCR 500). A total of 11 1⁄2 years, with credit for time served, is an appropriate cumulative sentence of this series of offences, and does not offend the totality principle.