Eskasoni man gets suspended sentence for attack on Nova Scotia Power linesmen

A man from Eskasoni, N.S., has been handed a three-year suspended sentence for attacking two Nova Scotia Power linemen in Cape Breton.

On Feb 7, 2022, two linemen were out checking lines in Malagawatch, N.S., after an ice storm knocked out power in the area.

According to an agreed statement of facts, the attacker approached their marked truck. When they rolled down the window to talk to him, he lunged into the cab and pulled a knife.

The two linemen describe a terrifying encounter that lasted up to an hour.

According to the court records, the attacker held the knife to one lineman's throat. When the other lineman tried to drive away, the attacker grabbed the truck keys. He also head-butted one of the linemen, wounding him and threatened to bite off his nose.

In his sentencing decision, Nova Scotia Provincial Court Judge Peter Ross described the attacker's behaviour as both "dangerous and bizarre."

That included yelling at the two linemen and demanding that Nova Scotia Power pay him $5 million and accusing them of lying to him every time they answered one of his questions.

The confrontation eventually ended peacefully, with the attacker returning the keys and telling the two linemen not to talk about their experience. They reported it to the RCMP.

Just before the case was to go to trial in November of 2022, the attacker pleaded guilty to several charges, including assault with a weapon and assault causing bodily harm. One of the linemen provided a victim impact statement to the court in which he described lingering psychological harm.

Judge Ross sentenced the attacker in April, but the sentencing decision was only published by the courts on Tuesday.

The sentence includes restrictions such as a ban on weapons and the consumption of alcohol and controlled substances. The attacker had consumed liquid THC on the day he assaulted the linemen.