Guilty plea in White Rock knife-throwing incident

Conditional discharge, probation imposed in Surrey Provincial Court Monday

A man who threw an eight-inch butcher knife at a White Rock police officer last May pleaded guilty Monday morning to ‘assault peace officer with a weapon.’

READ MORE: Knives thrown at White Rock police responding to ‘scene of a disturbance’

Jaspal Singh Grewal entered the plea before Judge Delaram Jahani in Surrey Provincial Court.

In imposing sentence – the judge agreed with a joint submission for a conditional discharge and 12 months probation – Jahani noted Grewal had no previous criminal record, was active in his community and that he expressed remorse for his actions on the evening in question.

“Whatever happened, that was wrong and it will not be repeated,” Grewal told Jahani through a translator.

“He is sorry.”

Prior to sentencing, Crown counsel James Stevenson told the court that Grewal was arrested in late May 2018, after police attended his home on two consecutive evenings – the first time because a family member reported threatening comments, and the second because Grewal himself called police, claiming a family member had tried to burn down his house.

The court heard that Grewal became agitated during the second visit.

“He went up to the third-floor balcony of the home where officers could observe he was carrying an eight-inch butcher knife,” Stevenson said.

Grewal was encouraging police to use deadly force, but officers instead tried to persuade Grewal to put the knife down, the court heard.

Grewal then threw the knife at one officer and went back inside. The officer was not injured.

Grewal then emerged from his house with his hands behind his back. On police demand, he moved one hand into view, at which time police could see he was holding four more knives, Stevenson said.

Officers convinced Grewal to put down the knives and he was taken into custody without further incident.

Stevenson told the court that family members “had generally positive things to say” about Grewal. The problem, he said, arises when alcohol is involved.

Noting Grewal has taken steps towards rehabilitation, Jahani imposed conditions including no contact with four individuals if Grewal has consumed alcohol within the previous 24 hours.

Monday had initially been scheduled as the start of a three-day trial. Two other charges against Grewal, of uttering threats, were stayed.

READ MORE: Trial set in White Rock knives-thrown case

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