Controversial blogger pleads guilty to disturbance charge
Controversial Fredericton blogger Charles LeBlanc has pleaded guilty to creating a disturbance during a court appearance on Monday.
LeBlanc originally pleaded not guilty in September, but he switched his plea on Monday in a Fredericton court.
LeBlanc was arrested for causing a disturbance outside of the city’s police headquarters in September.
The Crown prosecutor asked for a suspended sentence on Monday and probation terms that include LeBlanc not having or using a bullhorn or voice-amplification device in public place.
"The Crown is not interested in interfering with Mr, LeBlanc's effort to express himself," according to a Crown prosecutor.
LeBlanc also apologized to four complainants during his court hearing.
"Listen, everybody knows Charles LeBlanc is loud. I don't need a blowhorn. I had one. So the old saying, `You learn by your mistakes,'" LeBlanc said outside the courtroom.
"Next time, I won't have a blowhorn. I'll just holler. No problem there."
LeBlanc agreed to a six-month suspended sentence and probation. LeBlanc will perform community service at the city's soup kitchen.
LeBlanc is still facing court dates for three alleged bylaw violations, including riding his bicycle on the sidewalk.
He has alleged he's been prosecuted because of his criticisms of officials at the New Brunswick legislature, an allegation that they deny.
When LeBlanc was released from custody in September, he had to agree to a condition that he did not use a bullhorn or voice-amplification device in downtown Fredericton.
LeBlanc writes a blog on politics and social justice issues.
The blogger had received warnings from the Fredericton Police that people were complaining about his use of a bullhorn outside the police headquarters.
The blogger had been protesting the ticket he received for riding his bike on the sidewalk in Fredericton.
Fredericton Police Const. Rick Mooney confirmed in September that LeBlanc was arrested because of the complaints from people in a nearby office building.