Sudbury court: Woman says drug addiction took its toll

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“Drugs and all: my body can’t take it anymore”

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When Stephanie Cooper stood up in the prison box to address a Sudbury judge, she made it clear she was tired of a lifestyle fueled by addiction.

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“I worked very hard to rehabilitate myself, not for anyone else or for the courts, but for me and my children,” she told Ontario Court judge Dana Peterson. . “My daughter, she is 17 years old. She told me how much I should make. Drugs and all: my body can’t take it anymore.

Cooper, 32, who had been in custody for some time, pleaded guilty to four of the seven charges she faced: breach of probation, theft under $5,000, breach of recognizance; and obstructing a police officer.

In exchange for the guilty pleas, the Crown dropped the other charges it faced.

Cooper was sentenced to 30 days in jail and a DNA order.

As she had been detained for 14 days on the charges, Cooper was given pretrial custody credit of 21 days. That leaves him nine days to serve.

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A probation order has not been issued since Cooper just received one on October 17 when she resolved another set of charges.

“I’m sure you’re very driven and want it for yourself, the fact that you want to be with your daughter and your kids,” Judge Peterson told Cooper. “Your record is disheartening, but your recent actions are encouraging.”

Peterson told Cooper to prepare to start when she is released and try to create a new life for herself.

“Take the time (there remains) to think about how you’re going to transition to being drug free in the community,” Judge said. “It’s important to strategize with things that will tempt you.”

The 30-day jail sentence had been suggested in a joint proposal by the Crown and defense attorney Denis Michel.

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The court heard that on September 26, Cooper was in the New Sudbury Walmart store when an employee saw her using a knife to cut labels off items and put them in a shopping bag.

Approached by a Walmart security employee and asked to show ID, Cooper said she didn’t have one, but gave a false name. Cooper then said she lied and gave a second name – Stephanie Fox – and a birth date of 2000.

A Greater Sudbury police officer who visited the store recognized Cooper. At the time, she was out on bail and expected to observe a curfew.

Cooper was also on probation and had breached a bail order condition by failing to report to Elizabeth Fry’s bail supervision program in early August.

In her sentencing brief, Michel noted that Cooper completed 18 programs while in custody, contacted Monarch Recovery Services, and will return to Wiikwemikoong First Nation where she plans to access Rainbow Lodge services.

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“She plans to get her life back together and get custody (of her three children),” the lawyer said.

Michel said Cooper, whose parents both attended boarding school, has had “a terrible life,” and she has also lost several family members over the past few months.

“Things were going well until this happened,” he said.

Michel said the drug abuse and circumstances on the street finally came to a head this year and Cooper spent two weeks in hospital recovering from a severe seizure. The cause of the seizure is unknown, the lawyer said.

In her sentencing brief, Assistant Crown Attorney Stephanie Baker said the Crown hopes Cooper makes full use of the resources of her home community to better herself and stay out of trouble.

hcarmichael@postmedia.com

Twitter: @HaroldCarmichae

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