DAWSON CREEK, B.C. — A Dawson Creek man recently received a lesser sentence after his defence council met with BC Crown Counsel prosecutors to discuss a plea resolution regarding a 2021 shooting.
Freddy Ominayak was sentenced to five years in prison by a Dawson Creek court earlier this month after he shot a woman in the face in August 2021.
The Crown dropped four other charges against Ominayak, which included attempted murder with a firearm, robbery, assault with a weapon, and willfully resisting or obstructing a peace officer.
The BC Prosecution Service told Energeticcity that Ominayak’s sentence was the result of plea resolution discussions between Crown Counsel and the defence counsel — something that the service said is “common and essential to the proper functioning” of B.C.’s justice system.
Crown Counsel’s plea resolution policy allows prosecutors to drop certain charges and proceed with others as long as Crown Counsel makes sure that any charge the accused pleads guilty to is suitable to the provable crimes committed by the individual and allows for an appropriate sentence.
“Resolutions reduce trauma and inconvenience to victims and witnesses. A resolution before trial ensures certainty and finality regarding the process. There will be no trial, no uncertainty as to the outcome and no appeal,” Ann Seymour with the BC Prosecution Service said via email.
She explained when prosecutors engage in plea resolution discussions, all information that’s known by Crown Counsel is taken into account, including facts that often aren’t known by the public.
In this case, Crown Counsel agreed to the plea resolution after a “full and careful review” of the facts of the offences, the relevant case law, and Ominayak’s personal circumstances, according to Seymour.
“On the facts of this case, the pleas to discharging a firearm with intent to wound or disfigure and to aggravated assault allowed the Crown to lay before the court all the relevant circumstances of the offences and allowed for a sentence that properly reflected the provable criminal conduct of the offender, his moral culpability, and his personal circumstances,” Seymour stated.
In the early hours of August 26th, 2021, a Dawson Creek woman checked herself into the Dawson Creek hospital with a gunshot wound. The hospital contacted authorities, and the Prince George Emergency Response Team was called in. The victim was then transported to a Vancouver hospital for emergency surgery and survived her injuries.
Officers later located Freddy Ominayak at a motel in the 1700 block of Alaska Avenue, and he was reportedly arrested without incident.
On May 8th, 2023, Ominayak was sentenced on charges of discharging a firearm with the intent to wound or disfigure and aggravated assault. The court also handed down a mandatory lifetime ban from owning firearms.
He was credited with 702 days of pre-sentence time in custody and will serve another 1,125 days in jail.
The BC Prosecution Service said two others have also been charged due to the incident. Vicki Lynn-Rice Ominayak and Jared Ryan Anderson are charged with attempted murder with a firearm, discharging a firearm with intent to wound or disfigure, aggravated assault, robbery, and assault with a weapon.
Jared Anderson will appear in Dawson Creek court for his sentencing hearing on June 20th, 2023, at 2 p.m.
Vicki Ominayak will also go to Dawson Creek court for her sentencing hearing on August 8th, 2023, at 2 p.m.