Five-year sentenced urged for near-fatal stabbing

Crown counsel is seeking five years in prison for a man who stabbed and nearly killed his boyfriend during an argument while the two were driving to Prince George.

Jesse Cote has remained in custody since the March 1, 2018 incident on Highway 97 at Salmon Valley, in which the victim was able to wave down a passing vehicle and get the occupants to call for help.

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Bleeding profusely from around the ear, victim was taken to hospital by ambulance. Not sure he would survive, an RCMP officer accompanied him on the ride and tried to get what information he could while the victim remained conscious.

Because his blood pressure was so low, paramedics had to drill a hole in a leg bone to administer medication and by the time they have arrived at University Hospital of Northern B.C., he had lost about two litres of blood.

It appeared he had been stabbed on the side of head just behind the ear but in order to determine the exact spot of the wound, physicians elected to use a CT scan. While inside the machine, his cartoroid in the side of his neck burst spraying blood around the inside of the machine, and he had to go through emergency surgery that saved his life.

Cote, meanwhile, had waited in the couple's car at it sat stuck in the snow on the side of the road. Police arrived to find his hands covered in blood. Blood was also found all over his clothes and throughout the car.

The victim told police they had been arguing while driving to Prince George. Things escalated after they had switched seats and the man was stabbed after he had got behind the wheel.

The two had been using drugs over the days before. Cote said he had been using heroin regularly and was in a poor mood that morning after he had consumed methamphetamine and alcohol the night before.

There was also a concern Cote suffers from a form of psychosis. He was on bail for a prior incident that involved the victim and an axe and while he was eventually issued a conditional discharge, Crown argued the incident was similar to the stabbing.

One of the conditions of the bail was that he get a psychological assessment, but Cote never followed up, the court was told. And when giving interviews to a psychologist and the author of a pre-sentence report, Cote often gave contradictory stories about what happened and about his background while often portraying himself as the victim.

In relation to the most-recent matter, Cote pleaded guilty to aggravated assault. Less credit for time served, Cote faces another 3 1/2 years in custody if provincial court judge Michael Gray agrees with Crown's arguments.

Defence counsel's submissions will be heard at a later date.

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