A Langley pedophile’s sentence for violating a court order against drinking was excessive, and didn’t take into account his Indigenous heritage, the BC Court of Appeal has ruled.
Kelly Glen Isbister was sentenced to three years in prison on Dec. 18, 2014 after he pleaded guilty to three counts of sexual touching of a person under 16 years old.
Isbister had groomed three teenaged boys, plying them with alcohol, drugs and cash. He sexually abused the boys and also took pornographic photos of them.
The third boy was abused after Isbister had been charged with molesting the first two teenagers.
In prison, Isbister refused to participate in treatment programs. Psychological testing showed he had no remorse and did not consider himself a sexual offender or believe what he did was wrong.
He was considered a high risk to re-offend. Isbister was given no chance for early release, and only left prison at the end of his full three-year sentence on Dec. 17, 2017.
In 2018, a court placed him under additional restrictions, including that he not drink and not enter a liquor store, and an 18-month period of monitoring, due to fears that he would reoffend.
Isbister was arrested in Vancouver after he both drank and entered a liquor store on Oct. 15, 2018. He was sentenced to a year in prison.
However, the Court of Appeal judges found the sentence didn’t fit the circumstances of the breach.
Isbister had used alcohol to groom his victims in the past, the judges noted.
“There is, however, no evidence that on this occasion Mr. Isbister was buying the alcohol for any reason other than personal consumption,” Justice Elizabeth Bennett wrote in the Court of Appeal ruling, noting he is an alcoholic. “On the other hand, Mr. Isbister breached the recognizance, which is a serious offence.”
She found that given the lack of consideration of Isbister’s Métis background, required by Canadian law, and the fact that it was a first breach, 30 to 90 days in prison would have been an appropriate sentence.
Since Isbister had already served 195 days behind bars, he was released.
Isbister remains under a lifetime ban from communicating with a person under 16 or being in public places where they might be expected to be present.
He was raised by a physically abusive father and was sexually abused himself by an adult woman when he was 12 years old.