'I was warned many times': Chatham woman speaks out about domestic violence
WINDSOR, ONT. -- A Chatham woman is speaking out about being a victim of domestic violence.
Shannon Barylewicz said her former abuser was her boyfriend Charles Robinet.
"He's a sweet talker. A charmer," said Barylewicz. "He put on a good show."
Barylewicz tells CTV News she began a relationship with Robinet around the time her mother was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Doctors told her mother she had one year to live.
"I was warned many times, but because me being vulnerable, I didn't see it. But everyone on the outside did,” she said. “Love is blind."
In 2018, Robinet was charged and found guilty of assault with a weapon stemming from an incident involving Barylewicz in Sarnia. He was sentenced to 12 months probation.
"We were back together like nothing happened," she admits. "He apologized. ‘I'm sorry. I'll get help.” I'll do whatever it takes and I fell for it."
According to the province of Ontario, it takes, on average, five attempts for a woman to leave her abuser before ending the relationship permanently.
Six months later, a second violent incident in Chatham that led to charges of assault and breach of court order.
On Thursday, Robinet, 53, appeared in Chatham's Ontario Court of Justice. Court heard on Oct. 28, 2018 both were consuming alcohol when an argument escalated, resulting in Robinet pushing Barylewicz leaving bruises on her forearms.
A victim impact statement written by Barylewicz reads: "He will always be a monster no matter what the punishment is. One thing that still bothers me, and will always haunt me is the time he stole from me and my dying mother… I will never recover from that. She is gone now and I will never get that time again."
Justice Stephen Fuerth addressed Robinet in court saying "intimate partnerships are where we expect the best treatment. I'm quite concerned...that you haven't accepted full responsibility...these courts are taking this kind of misconduct seriously."
Robinet was sentenced to 97 days in jail followed by 18 months probation.
"I feel like I got justice," said Barylewicz. "Hopefully he learns his lesson and he won't hurt other women."
Local Resources for Victims of Domestic Violence:
- Hiatus House – 24 Hour Crisis Line (519-252-7781)
- Welcome Centre Shelter for Women - 263 Bridge Ave. (519-971-7595)