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Alleged Canada Day gaybashing to be “resolved” without trial

Next court appearance set for Oct 25

Aaron Alexander Hahn (right), one of the accused in the alleged Canada Day gaybashing. Credit: Jeremy Hainsworth photo

The case of two men charged in the alleged Canada Day gaybashing on Davie St will be resolved without a trial at the Downtown Community Court on Oct 25, a lawyer for one of the accused said on Sept 14.

Alexandre Tchernychev and Aaron Alexander Hahn are both charged with assault causing bodily harm. Both men are 21 years old. Vancouver police were investigating the incident as a possible hate crime.

What the resolution might be remains unclear, but Crown prosecutor Alex Henderson asked Judge Elisabeth Burgess for more time to review the case for resolution.

Hahn’s lawyer, Mark Rowan, could not say what any plea situation might be. “It means the matter will be resolved,” he told Xtra.

Tchernychev’s lawyer, Henry Brown, says “in the context of criminal law, it means something other than a trial” when he was asked what “resolution” meant.

The Vancouver Police Department (VPD) cannot comment on a case while it is before the courts. Without case particulars, neither could the Criminal Justice Branch in Victoria.

Police said that at the time of the July 1 attack, a 30-year-old man was walking with friends along Davie St near Burrard  when they passed a group of men and women at about 2:45am.

Suddenly, a member of the group turned and verbally confronted the man, VPD spokesperson Const Jana McGuinness said. Words were exchanged and, without warning, the victim was allegedly punched in the face by his attacker and knocked to the ground.

“Disturbing comments were also allegedly made regarding the victim’s sexual orientation,” McGuinness said.

Police said a second man allegedly joined in the attack after the victim had fallen to the ground. Police said the victim suffered facial injuries that required medical attention at the scene.

The alleged attackers fled but were arrested minutes later in the 1100 block of Davie St.

According to its website, the Downtown Community Court differs from the traditional court model. It seeks to address crime in a timely way so that offenders see the consequences of their behaviour and can make reparation to the community.

Sentences imposed by the court focus on managing an offender’s risk of reoffending and compensating the community for harm caused by the crime. Sentences range from community service to community supervision to jail time.