A 24 –year-old man from Nain was sentenced to two years less a day in jail for his role in a brutal assault in the community. Frank Ford was found guilty of aggravated assault and was given credit for time served of 384 days, so he will serve an additional 345 days.
The charge arose from an incident on June 30, 2016 just before midnight when the Nain RCMP received a report of a man lying on the ground near the north end of the arena. When the police went to the man’s aid, they found Samuel Tuglavina “covered in blood.” According to an agreed statement of facts, his eyes were swollen shut, his face and nose were bloody, and his left ear was almost completely severed. He was taken to the clinic, and then medevac’d to Happy Valley-Goose Bay for further treatment.
Witnesses told the police that Madeleine Merkuratsuk and Ford had been seen kicking Tuglavina and then running away from the area. The police went to the residence of and Merkuratsuk when asked if she knew why they were there, she replied, “I hit Samuel.”
Merkuratsuk was arrested and detained in custody. She told the police that she had kicked Tuglavina, “probably 20 times”. She also claimed Ford had caused most of Tuglavina’s injuries. Merkuratsuk has also pleaded guilty, but has not yet been sentenced
Police found Ford in bed asleep. He was arrested, and taken to the police station. He agreed to give the police a statement, when he told police he had happened to come upon Merkuratsuk while she was in the process of kicking Tuglavina. Ford at first claimed that he had not assaulted Tuglavina but later admitted to having also kicked the victim in the head, summarizing it by saying “I f**ked up.”
Tuglavina woke up in hospital three days after the beating and had his ear surgically reattached, but has an impaired speech and gait, and sometimes has to close his eyes to get them to focus. He told the victim services worker that he finds it hard to write and to think, that his hearing has not fully recovered, and that he forgets things now.
Ford had a record with convictions for two assaults, an unlawful confinement and three breaches of undertaking. In addition to the jail time, Ford had to submit his DNA and is under a firearms ban for 10 years. Following his release, he will be on probation for two years.