The Appeal Court of Ontario has upheld a man’s jail sentence for criminal negligence and assault after a racially motivated attack on anglers that left one of them with permanent brain damage.
The Crown had appealed Trevor Middleton’s sentence of two years less a day, saying it didn’t reflect the racial overtones of the crime.
But in the decision released Thursday morning, the court denied the Crown’s appeal of that sentence, as well as Middleton’s appeal of his conviction
The Court wrote:Full decision here
 This case represents an example of a situation where the sentence chosen by the trial judge within the appropriate range is to be accorded the deference of this court. As the Supreme Court recently stated in R. v. Nasogaluak, 2010 SCC 6,  1 S.C.R. 206, at para. 43:
No one sentencing objective trumps the others and it falls to the sentencing judge to determine which objective or objectives merit the greatest weight, given the particulars of the case.
 In R. v. Ramage, 2010 ONCA 488, 257 C.C.C. (3d) 261, Doherty J.A. explained the three reasons why appellate deference to a trial judge’s sentencing decision makes sense: 1) because judges have varying views on the appropriateness of any particular sentence, it is not often an effective use of judicial resources for an appellate court to substitute its view for that of the trial judge; 2) the trial judge who heard the evidence and saw the accused and victims is in the best position to balance the factors and competing interests; and 3) the trial judge reflects the views and needs of the community in which the offence occurred and the affected people often reside.
 While the sentence imposed here can certainly be viewed as one at the lower end of the scale, the trial judge was clearly attempting to impose the maximum he could without sending the appellant, as a youthful first offender, to the penitentiary. This did not constitute an error of law. It reflects the very serious conduct and consequences for the victims, while giving effect to the principles of individual deterrence, denunciation and prospects for rehabilitation. The sentence is not manifestly unfit.
 The trial judge’s reasons were thorough and nuanced in their analysis of the delicate array of issues that impacted on the determination of the appropriate sentence in this case. I would defer to his decision.