A Coquitlam man has been found not guilty of attempted murder and sexual assault related to a day-long crime spree three years ago in Port Moody.
But Vahidreza Bordbar will be sentenced on 17 other charges — including two counts of sexual assault and three counts of robbery — to which he pled guilty before his May trial. His sentencing on those counts will occur on October 5.
It was shortly after midnight on Dec. 15, 2014, when two women walking on a trail near Heritage Mountain community hall were attacked. The court heard that during the robbery, Bordbar climbed on top of one of the victims with a knife to take her purse.
The defendant admitted robbing the woman, identified only as A.C. in court fillings, and that he held the blade to her throat after she resisted. But he denied the victim’s assertion that he pulled her sweatpants down with both of his hands in the course of the attack.
“Mr. Bordbar agreed that A.C.’s sweatpants came down slightly while she was on the ground but he said this was not from him pulling on them,” B.C. Supreme Court Justice Lance Bernard said in his reasons for judgement. “He explained that while A.C. was on her back on the pavement, she used her feet to push herself away from him as he tried to reach for her backpack-style purse.”
Bernard said Bordbar was holding a knife during the attack, which was inconsistent with testimony from A.C. that he pulled her pants down with both hands. The judge also said that Bordbar testified in a “frank and forthright manner” while the victim, who was 17 at the time and under the influence of alcohol, “repeatedly expressed uncertainty about various aspects of the encounter.”
Bernard was also not convinced there was enough evidence to convict on the two counts of attempted murder. Those charges stem from the fact that Bordbar showed up at A.C.’s home the morning after the initial attack with a rifle and wrestled with A.C.’s father, who is known as S.C. in court filings.
Bordbar had the keys to the home from the purse but the locks had already been changed. Undeterred, he rang the doorbell and S.C. answered the door. At trial, S.C. testified that Bordbar said “he was here to kill A.C.” before the two wrestled for control of the gun on the front porch of the home. Bordbar fell down the stairs in the altercation but picked up his gun and pointed it at S.C. with the purpose of getting “S.C. to back off,” said Bernard.
S.C. also testified that Bordbar pulled the trigger when the gun was pointed at him but that no bullet fired.
In his ruling, Bernard said some of S.C.’s testimony was inconsistent with the evidence. In the reasons for judgement, he noted that the trigger group on the rifle had fallen off in the foyer during the struggle, making it impossible for S.C. to see Bordbar pull the trigger.
The judge also said that it was unlikely Bordbar intended to kill A.C., as alleged by S.C.
Bernard noted that there was only one bullet in the gun, which Bordbar testified was there in case he needed to fire a round into the ceiling to get his victims to comply during the robbery.
S.C. also failed to mention that Bordbar said “I’m here to kill [A.C.]” to investigators in two interviews with police in the days following the incident.
“It was not until the third interview, three days later, that S.C. first attributed these words to Mr. Bordbar,” said Bernard in the reasons for judgement.
In the hours following the incident at the home of A.C. and S.C, a man matching Bordbar’s description was arrested after a woman was sexually assaulted on Eagle Mountain before having her car stolen. He was taken into custody after a brief pursuit.
Sentencing will move forward this fall on the 17 charges, which include two counts of sexual assault, assault, assault causing bodily harm, three counts of robbery, four counts of disguising a face with intent to commit an offence, pointing a firearm, theft of a motor vehicle, break and enter with intent to commit offence, use of a firearm to commit an indictable offence, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose and attempting to choke and overcome resistance.