Crown, defence both file appeals in Amy Hood case

Community Court Featured

PICTOU — Both Crown and defence have filed notices of appeal in the criminal case of Carolyn Amy Hood.

After being sentenced on December 14 of last year, the legal matters for Hood are being brought back to the attention of the court system. Crown attorney Bill Gorman filed a notice of appeal at the Halifax Court of Appeal on January 4 of this year. Not long after, Hood’s lawyer Joel Pink filed a notice of cross-appeal for the case.

Hood was found guilty last year of sex crimes involving teenaged boys — one count of sexual interference, sexual exploitation and two counts of luring a child despite a not guilty plea which led to a two-week trial. The former teacher was ultimately sentenced to a 15-month conditional sentence order followed by 24 months of probation.

Gorman has filed the notice of appeal based on the grounds that the provincial court judge deviated from the law when he ruled that the mandatory one-year minimum punishment for her charges was found to be cruel and unusual punishment. Other reasons for the appeal included the inadequate sentence reflects denunciation and deterrence, the sentence is inadequate due to the nature of the crimes and their circumstances; he also said that upon review, more grounds for appeal may come forth.

The Crown attorney is hoping for the appeal to grant a period of incarceration for Hood.

The cross appeal that was filed by Pink stated the grounds for it included the trial judge making an error when he maintained that he was entitled to draw an adverse inference against Hood because she had decided not to testify and that the judge mentioned that the failure to testify was a basis to disregard the expert evidence.

Other reasons for the cross appeal were that the judge’s decision was not supported by the evidence, he was mistaken in his interpretation of the requirements of Section 16 of the Criminal Code as well as the the judge having made an error in his treatment of expert evidence.

In summary, the cross appeal states that Pink is asking for the finding of guilt to be set aside and replaced with a finding that Hood is not criminally responsible because of her mental illness, or that a new trial be ordered.

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