News

Surrey man who molested 9-year-old girl deemed a dangerous offender

  -
— image credit:

A man who broke into a nine-year-old Surrey girl's bedroom and sexually assaulted her nearly three years ago has been deemed a dangerous offender and sentenced to an indeterminate prison sentence with no scheduled date for release.

In handing down his decision in Surrey Provincial Court Wednesday, Judge James Donald Bahen said Kyle Berkson showed a failure to control his sexual impulses in the past and a "strong" likelihood of not being able to do so in the future, potentially putting the community – particularly children – at risk.

The appropriate sentence, he said, had to be "a period of indeterminate detention" because any lesser sentence would not ensure the community would be "adequately protected."

Berkson, 39, was convicted in February 2011 of sexual interference (touching someone under 14 for a sexual purpose), invitation to sexual touching, breaking and entering with intent to commit sexual assault with a weapon and uttering threats.

In April 2010, Berkson snuck into the bedroom of the Surrey child. She woke to him sitting on top of her and Berkson proceeded to sexually assault her, tried to get her to perform oral sex, licked her cheek and threatened her before fleeing. She also suffered a cut to her arm.

During the trial, the girl testified that the man who attacked her looked and sounded like Berkson, who was a family acquaintance.

There is a publication ban on any information that could identify the child.

After Berkson was convicted, Crown indicated it would seek dangerous offender status for him. Defense was seeking a jail term of between six and 12 years.

The girl's grandmother, who has been caring for her since she was a baby, was pleased the dangerous offender status was granted.

"I'm really happy he won't hurt anyone else," she said outside court. "I'm really grateful that he's not going to get out."

When asked if she thought there was any hope for Berkson's rehabilitation, she answered "no," adding he is a liar and has never apologized.

She said her granddaughter, who's now 12, is doing well and treats the attack "as if it was a bad dream."

The court heard Berkson was adopted as a baby and that his adoptive father was a compulsive gambler who physically abused him. Berkson was also sexually victimized between the ages of four and 12 by a neighbour, was doing marijuana and cocaine by his teens and was convicted of a long string of property offences as a youth. His prior adult convictions include assault with a weapon, breaking and entering and possession for the purpose of trafficking.

In 1993 he also pleaded guilty to sexual interference after touching a five-year-old boy's penis in Surrey.

A search of Berkson's home after the 2010 arrest found four videos with child pornography.

Judge Bahen said even with treatments, Berkson's success may be limited and the "obstacles will be significant and onerous."

As part of his sentence for the 2010 assault, Berkson also has to provide a DNA sample, has a lifetime weapons ban, and his name will be added to the sex offender registry. Any contact with the victim or witnesses of his latest offence is prohibited.

 

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

Community Events, April 2014

Add an Event

Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Apr 17 edition online now. Browse the archives.