B.C. woman jailed one year for sexually assaulting partner's niece

Woman jailed for sex assault

A Vancouver woman has been sentenced to 12 months in jail and two years’ probation for sexually assaulting her partner’s niece.

Sable Raven Thom Jamerson was found guilty of sexual assault of the teen after a trial ending in May 2023.

Vancouver Provincial Court Judge Harbans Dhillon said in her April 18 sentencing that, in 2019, Jamerson and her common-law partner agreed to host the niece for an overnight stay in their Vancouver apartment.

The teen had recently moved to Canada from overseas to attend university on Vancouver Island.

Jamerson was in her early 40s and the complainant was 18 years of age.

Dhillon said Jamerson and the teen socialized in the living room well past midnight.

“They sat on the sofa and conversed about personal matters. The complainant shared some highly personal and intimate information with Ms. Jamerson who does not dispute the general nature of their conversation,” Dhillon said.

Each consumed alcoholic drinks, including cider, wine, and whisky, and shared a small amount of marijuana.

The teen drifted off to sleep and then awoke.

“The complainant described a sensation of acute pain,” Dhillon said. “The complainant did not consent and could not have consented, as she had been asleep. She pretended to have just awakened, got up from the sofa, and quickly made her way to her bedroom, locking the door behind her.”

She left the following morning without saying goodbye and sought hospital mental health care on her return to Vancouver Island.

“Jamerson denies the sexual assault, and appears to blame the victim,” Dhillon said.

Jamerson said she kissed the teen after the teen revealed she found women attractive, and because she felt sorry for her in not having an outlet for sharing her sexuality.

Dhillon said the uncle also blamed the victim “for fabricating a lie about his partner.”

Dhillon said the victim feels an overall lack of security and trust in her relationships, has feelings of discomfort in intimacy and suffers from ongoing anxiety, depression and insomnia.

“She has needed therapy to help her deal with betrayal from someone she considered a family member who caused her harm and pain,” the judge said.

The Crown sought 14 months in jail and two years’ probation. Defence suggested an 18-month conditional sentence order to be served in the community and two years’ probation.

The judge ruled the teen expected to be safe and secure in a family home, and that it happened when the teen was trying to navigate her own sexuality.

Dhillon said Jamerson knew the teen was in a place of vulnerability when she sought counsel and support from her.

“Ms. Jamerson’s motivations in violating (the teen) were self-serving and morally indefensible. She has caused great harm to the complainant,” the judge said.

“I conclude that Ms. Jamerson’s offending was serious, invasive, violative, and she bears a high degree of moral blameworthiness.” 

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