Sex offender with violent history gets two months for failing to register

An elderly convicted killer and rapist was sentenced on Wednesday to spend less than two months in prison for failing to register as a sex offender.

Benjamin Archie, 78, also pleaded guilty to failing to abide by the conditions of his probation.

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Archie, a First Nations elder with a criminal record dating back to 1966, has served lengthy prison sentences in the past — including seven years behind bars in the 1980s for manslaughter following the death of a 22-year-old Canim Lake woman.

In 1999, he was sentenced to 18 months in jail after being found guilty of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl at three B.C. powwows.

In 2006, Archie was sentenced to spend nearly six years in federal prison for a conviction stemming from an incident in which he drove his then-wife to a rural area outside Kamloops and beat her until she agreed to have sex with him.

Five years ago, Archie was jailed for more than a year after a jury found him guilty of assault stemming from an incident with a 32-year-old woman he picked up on Tranquille Road.

Court heard Archie offered the victim a ride to Kelowna. The woman claimed Archie violently raped and beat her on the forest floor off a logging road near Merritt.

The woman later jumped out of Archie’s moving vehicle on the Okanagan Connector and was helped by a passerby.

A doctor testified there was no evidence the woman had been raped. The jury returned a not-guilty verdict for sexual assault but concluded Archie had beaten the victim.

At the time of his sentencing in 2014, a prosecutor said the Crown would have sought a dangerous offender label for Archie had he been convicted of sexual assault — meaning he could have been ordered to spend an indefinite term in prison.

Court has heard in the past that Archie was a victim of physical and sexual abuse while a child as a student at a residential school.

At Archie’s sentencing on Wednesday, Kamloops provincial court Judge Stephen Harrison was told Archie’s behaviour is becoming less criminal and more medical as he ages.

Harrison cited Archie’s age in sentencing him to serve 60 days in jail, minus three days for time served.

© Kamloops This Week

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