HASH-tagger lawyer gets parole


A man who has made his mark throughout Norfolk County, causing thousands of dollars in damage by spray painting buildings, signs, fences and bridges, has received a parole that may one day allow him to resume the legal profession.Aaron Brent Lundrigan, 38, a lawyer under administrative suspension for non-payment of dues, admitted in Simcoe Ontario court to having damaged at least 36 different sites, mostly between November 1, 2018 and January 4, 2019.

“On December 22, 2018, he was found committing mischief by spray painting a building in Waterloo,” said Assistant Crown Attorney Lynette Fritzley, County of Norfolk. ”

Lundrigan, who specialized in spraying the stylized word “HASH”, was initially charged with one count of mischief over $ 5,000 and 24 counts of mischief under $ 5,000.

In court, he was allowed to plead guilty to a single mischief charge over $ 5,000.

Fritzley said the well-educated Lundrigan had no criminal record, was cooperative with the police and had experienced mental health issues that were, at least in part, responsible for his behavior.

“It wouldn’t be against the public interest if he could fight his demons and become a full member of our community again,” Fritzley said.

Lundrigan lawyer Ann Marie Stewart said her client was an “extraordinarily bright young man” who practiced law in Toronto when mental health issues took over his life and prompted him to take time off work. of illness.

“Disability issues are very poorly understood,” said Stewart, noting that it can be particularly difficult for a lawyer to deal with such issues when their reputation is at stake.

“He’s doing the right things. He’s looking for treatment.

The parole, granted by Justice Aubrey Hilliard, means that as long as Lundrigan succeeds in maintaining a three-year probation period, he can honestly say he has never been convicted of a criminal offense and could , one day, to return to his practice.

Hilliard noted that Lundrigan had been a very productive member of society before his troubles.

“It is unfortunately not surprising in the practice of law that at times people with mental health issues can find themselves completely overwhelmed,” the judge said.

She said her probation – the longest that can be ordered – will allow Lundrigan to “earn his parole.”

Lundrigan himself spoke during a discussion about banning the possession of spray paint during those years,

“I didn’t engage in graffiti at all, but I am an artist. Is possession of spray paint for these purposes permitted? ”

Hilliard decided he could have such a painting as long as it was on his own property and didn’t damage anything that wasn’t his.

Lundrigan will also be required to complete 50 hours of community service in 18 months.

“You risk losing the release I gave you if you commit a criminal offense,” the judge warned.

She has not issued a restitution order as Lundrigan is currently unable to make significant payments.

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