Nova Scotia provincial court judge, Gregory Lenehan, should step down from his job. Clearly, he is incompetent, with no sense of any thought process.
Lenehan, of course, is the judge who has made headlines across the country when, last week, he acquitted taxi driver Bassam Al-Rawi of sexual assault in a May 2015 incident. In this case, police had found Al-Rawi in his parked cab, pants unbuttoned, with a woman who was passed out in the back seat and naked from the waist down.
Al-Rawi, apparently with the unconscious woman's panties in hand, claimed that she had consented to sex.
Lenehan, in his ruling, stated that "clearly, a drunk can consent."
Really? Is it clear?
He added, "The Crown failed to produce any evidence of lack of consent at any time."
I'm sorry, but as soon as a person loses consciousness, all prior consent is immediately suspended. If I am ever drunk and am offered one more pint of beer, and if, in my drunken state, I agree to having one, please do not pour the contents of that glass down my throat if I pass out before I can finish it on my own.
I am highly doubtful that a situation would actually occur when a cab driver would pick up a woman he has never met before and that random, paying customer would agree to having sex. That is the stuff of porn movies, not of real life.
Judge Lenehan should be ashamed of himself. A drunk person cannot consent any more than he or she can drive home. Or enter a contract. But if a person losses consciousness, consent is suspended and anyone who tries to have sex with an unconscious person is not doing so with consent.
Al-Rawi, in having sex with an unconscious person, was committing sexual assault.
I see it and so does the mass of protestors who share the outrage in the verdict. Why could Lenehan not see it.
As other victims of Al-Rawi are coming to light, I have hopes that an appeal brings a new trial. And a new judge.
Not Gregory Lenehan.
In making his ruling, he has lost credibility as an official who can make clear distinctions between right and wrong.
And he needs to resign.