News / Vancouver

Video: Vancouver hockey coach gets 15 days in jail for tripping teen player

A former Vancouver peewee hockey coach has been sentenced to 15 days in jail on weekends and 12 months probation for tripping a young player during a post-game handshake.

Martin Tremblay pleaded guilty to assault in November and was sentenced in Richmond provincial court Tuesday.

Tremblay, 48, was caught on video sticking his foot out at a 13-year-old player on the opposing team during an on-ice handshake, causing the teen and a 10-year-old teammate to fall to the ice following a gold-medal game in June at the University of B.C.

The teen suffered a wrist injury and Tremblay has been suspended from coaching by the Vancouver Minor Hockey Association following his arrest.

Crown had asked for 30 days of house arrest and 18 months probation, but Richmond provincial court judge Patrick Chen said this was not enough since the case involved an assault of an adult against two young children.

In his sentencing, Chen compared what Tremblay did to a “cowardly sucker punch on unsuspecting victims.”

Chen also said that Tremblay should’ve been the role model and not have inflamed the situation by verbally bullying the young player.

Defence argued that Tremblay was overworked and exhausted because of his construction business and volunteer work, which contributed to his behaviour at the time.

Tremblay’s lawyer Bob Bellows said they were both surprised by the jail sentence, but won’t be appealing the decision.

He said Tremblay has suffered from the notoriety of his case.

“He lost his wife, he lost a number of construction contracts … He put in years and years coaching hockey … and as a Scout Master,” Bellows told reporters outside court.

“That’s all over because of one incident when he was off his anti-depressants for three weeks so he’s paid a huge price.”

Tremblay’s first day in jail started Tuesday and the rest of his 15-day sentence will be served intermittently on weekends.

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