Sat. May 21st, 2022

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One fall morning three years ago, a prominent doctor ate breakfast before going to work when there was a knock on the door of his home in northern Toronto.

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Two men in hard hats and construction vests stood on his porch.

When he found out they were doing work in the area of ​​the city, the 69-year-old widower opened the door.

That would be a terrible mistake.

Each man took one of his arms and they forced themselves inside.

“We want the money,” they demanded, blinking what looked like a gun. “There’s a safe in this house, and it has money in it, and we want the money.”

The doctor, whose name is protected by a publication ban, did not know what they were talking about. He did not have a safe. He offered them the cash in his wallet.

Their response was to start hitting him in the head with a hard object.

His pants and underwear were removed and his hands tied. They kicked and punched him, breaking his nose, wrist and a finger, breaking his ribs and perforating a eardrum.

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He’s pretty sure he was Tasered in the shoulder too.

“I was afraid I might die,” he told the Ontario Superior Court. “I was not sure if I should survive this brutal beating, and it was absolutely awful. Definitely the worst day of my life. ”

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When he realized that they had finally left, the severely beaten doctor managed to free himself and went covered in blood to a neighbor for help.

Surveillance video from nearby homes showed that three “construction workers” – one was the getaway driver – had fled. And everyone would have escaped justice if the bandit Jacob Owusu-Sarpong had not left.

After Toronto Police finished dusting off fingerprints and taking photographs, they left, and the doctor’s stepdaughter went upstairs to check if any of her deceased mother’s jewelry had been stolen. That was when she noticed the bandage on the carpet in the bedroom.

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She had obviously seen enough television to know that it had to be put in a bag and handed over to investigators. Probably the DNA came back and the police now had a suspect.

A search for Owusu-Sarpong’s Jane St. apartment showed three hard hats — two of them bloodstained with DNA that could be traced to the doctor — two construction vests, zippers, a Taser and a loaded gun.

Owusu-Sarpong, 32, was sentenced this week to 16 years in prison.

“This was a terrible home invasion,” Judge Jane Kelly said. A 69-year-old man was violently assaulted and sexually assaulted in his own home. He was a vulnerable victim. ”

She found that removing him from the waist down was behavior of a “sexual nature”.

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Owusu-Sarpong had a criminal record that included possession of a limited firearm as well as assault and had spent time in a provincial prison. He admitted to being part of a drug deal.

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Still, he was a bit of a riddle-high school graduate going to York University before dropping out, had worked as a personal trainer and in the Medieval Times, and was hired as a mentor in his Jane-Finch community.

He has written a book while being held at the Toronto South Detention Center and hopes to have it published.

The judge said she would have considered a harsher sentence of 18 to 19 years, but felt he still has the potential to turn his life around.

“I can not say with certainty that there is no hope of rehabilitation,” Kelly said. “Mr Owusu-Sarpong, I wish you good luck in the future.”

With three years of credit for pre-trial detention, the violent home-invader has 12 years and nine months left to think about how he struck at a vulnerable senior — and how a bandage was his regret.

mmandel@postmedia.com

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