Windsor

'He got what he deserved': Ex-Kingsville fire chief sentenced to 5 years in prison

Ex-fire chief Bob Kissner was led out of court in handcuffs Thursday, after receiving a sentence of five years in prison less a day for multiple counts of sexual exploitation and sexual assault.

Kissner will remain on the sex offender registry

Ex-Kingsville fire chief Bob Kissner will remain on the sex offender registry. (Stacey Janzer/CBC)

Former Kingsville fire chief Bob Kissner was led out of court in handcuffs Thursday, after receiving a sentence of five years in prison less a day for multiple counts of sexual exploitation and sexual assault.

Kissner was found guilty in April on nine of 17 charges, including four counts of sexual exploitation and five counts of sexual assault. Five minors and three adults had filed complaints. 

Superior Court Justice Pamela Hebner — who heard victim impact statements at the first sentencing hearing in June — announced her decision in court on Thursday.

In court, Kissner said there were actions he regrets, but "expects God will bring about something good from this."

Kissner will be required to have DNA on file with police and will remain on the sex offender registry.

Ken Marley, Kissner's defence attorney, told reporters after the hearing that his client will first go to the South West Detention Centre, before being transferred to the Millhaven Institution — a maximum security penitentiary — where he'll be classified as a low, medium or high security risk. 

Kissner's defence attorney Ken Marley says he was relieved his client didn't receive eight years, but is disappointed his client didn't receive two years. (Dale Molnar/CBC)

"Which penitentiary [he] ultimately goes to will depend on that classification process," said Marley. 

Kissner still faces other charges from a separate complainant.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled sometime in January. 

'I have no feelings for him'

Speaking after the sentencing hearing, one of Kissner's victims described the former fire chief as a "very callous person, remorseless."

"Quite frankly, he's a hypocrite to the religion he hides behind and the oath he took to serve the public," he said. "I'm just hoping that we can all move past it and carry on, because we've gone through enough."

He noted that Kissner failed to formally apologize for his actions.

"I have no feelings for him, he got what he deserved."

Assistant Crown attorney Jennifer Holmes says she believes Bob Kissner received a fair and reasonable stentence. (Dale Molnar/CBC)

Assistant crown attorney Jennifer Holmes told reporters that Hebner delivered a "fair and reasoned decision."

"I think that the sentence was entirely fair," said Holmes. "I feel that the victims and their families were satisfied with it, and so is the Crown."

In regards to Kissner's lack of apology, Holmes said that Kissner seemed to take the view throughout the case that his actions didn't constitute criminal behaviour.

"I think he maintained all along … that it was Mr. Kissner's view that it was consensual," she said.

Holmes described the first victim to come forward as a "very brave boy."

I think that the sentence was entirely fair.- Jennifer Holmes, assistant Crown attorney

While speaking with reporters, Marley said his client was "very concerned for his safety, but he knows that he's got to go through this."

"He admitted that he made mistakes, and I think implicit in what he said was an apology for having made those mistakes, but it would be inconsistent ... with the position he took at trial."

Marley said he was disappointed that Hebner didn't deliver a sentence of two years less a day, but that he was "relived it wasn't eight years."

"Whether the five years is something which Mr. Kissner will appeal against or not, that remains to be seen," he said. 

Kissner has 30 days as of Thursday's sentencing hearing to decide whether to begin an appeal.

With files from Dale Molnar