A woman is in custody facing various charges including criminal harassment for alleged incidents involving Chilliwack Mayor Sharon Gaetz.

Woman who harassed mayor ordered to leave Chilliwack

Repeated unwanted contacts prompts rare probation condition excluding her from city limits

A woman who claimed to be Mayor Sharon Gaetz’s daughter and repeatedly harassed the mayor over many months was ordered to stay out of Chilliwack city limits by a provincial court judge on Monday.

Jennifer Alice Danielsen also made phone calls and sent letters and packages containing “rambling and delusional” writing to local doctor Kenneth Hirst, Gaetz’s husband Jim, and Fraser Valley Regional District Area H director Taryn Dixon, who is also a high school principal and is close friends with the mayor.

READ: Alleged threats to Chilliwack mayor lead to criminal charges

“There is a suggestion that Miss Danielsen doesn’t get it,” said Crown counsel Jim Barbour in arguing for the banishment from the city. “She considers the mayor to be her mother and going to city hall her right.”

Neither the mayor nor city hall have directly addressed the case up until now, but a spokesperson in the summer said the matter, which has gone on for more than a year, “has been stressful for everyone involved.”

That stress culminated on June 14 when Danielsen attended city hall, where bail conditions already forbade her from attending, only to tell the person at the front counter that “she wanted to turn herself in to the mayor for murder.”

This caused alarms to go off within city hall, even forcing Gaetz into a “chambers lockdown.”

Danielsen never directly threatened the mayor, her lawyer Jayse Reveley pointed out, but the disconcerting contacts over many months despite court orders to stop caused Gaetz serious concern.

It didn’t come up in court, but a likely further cause of stress is that Danielsen often signed her missives “Jenny,” while claiming to be her daughter. Gaetz’s real daughter, Jenna, died in a tragic scooter accident 15 years ago.

Danielsen had also been sending packages and making phone calls to Dr. Hirst over a period of months, leading to a charge of harassment against her. In one letter she told Hirst that he couldn’t kill babies, but she could.

After that, Dixon received numerous unwanted contacts and filed for and received a protection order from Danielsen.

Hirst told police he was concerned the contents of her messages to him exhibited serious mental health issues. The contents of packages sent to the mayor, including at least one to her home where she resides with her husband Jim, similarly elicited mental health concerns.

In June a psychological report was ordered, but she was deemed fit by the court.

In her defence, Reveley said Danielsen may not be certifiable but she has obsessive-compulsive issues along with acute psychosis that comes and goes. Indeed, on the day she was arrested at city hall, Reveley said she had been having paranoid episodes, went to the hospital where she was seen and discharged, then she walked to city hall.

“She attended city hall with the intent of getting arrested,” he said. “There is no suggestion Miss Danielsen is a physical danger to anybody.”

Reveley called the Crown’s position on having her banned from Chilliwack “overbroad” arguing that she has mental health issues that need addressing, and her sole support is her male partner who lives in an apartment in Chilliwack.

Crown argued that the stress and threat to the mayor and city hall staff warranted the no-go, what he called a “protection order” rather than “banishment.”

“A no-go to Chilliwack should not be onerous,” he argued.

In the end, Judge Gurmail Gill agreed. Prior to reading his decision, Danielsen addressed the court with a somewhat cryptic apology where she called the case “complicated.”

“I don’t feel totally understood,” she said. “It’s more a lack of family resources than a mental health issue.”

Danielsen has been in custody for 105 days, more than the 90 days asked for by the Crown. She was set to be released Monday afternoon subject to 18 months probation for the Hirst and Gaetz matters, and the protection order for Dixon.

In agreeing with Crown’s submissions on the no-go to Chilliwack, Gill dismissed the defence argument that most of the unwanted contacts were done via mail, something she could do from anywhere.

Gill said a ban on entering city limits should give a sense of personal safety and comfort to her victims.

“It at least removes the prospect of a personal confrontation,” he said.


@PeeJayAitch
paul.henderson@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Mission to host We’re Your Neighbours immigration forum

Baltej Dhillon will be the guest speaker at the event set for March 17

Senior randomly stabbed in Abbotsford mall food court

Woman arrested after victim, 71, suffers serious injuries

Three companies added to city’s water plant lawsuit

Abbotsford suing companies that designed Norrish Creek water plant for damage from flooded in 2015

Mission chamber plans trip to Ireland

Offering their members the opportunity to enjoy a a trip of a lifetime

What is machine learning?

Mission teacher wants to create series of video tutorials

UPDATED: Ridge RCMP assist in Mission arrests

Two suspects fled from Eighteen Pastures golf course.

Ice dancers Virtue and Moir to carry flag for Canada at 2018 Olympics

The pair earned a gold medal at the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games

5 to start your day

‘Young, innocent’ teen dies in Vancouver shootout, 152 Street overpass repairs start and more

Diplomacy on agenda at North Korea summit in Vancouver

Foreign ministers from 20 countries are meeting Tuesday to discuss security and stability on the Korean Peninsula.

Congestion points or distance: How Metro Vancouver could pay for its roads

Mobility pricing commission identifies two options in report

Kids chained in Calif. house of horrors; parents arrested

Authorities say an emaciated teenager led deputies to home where her 12 brothers and sisters were locked up in filthy conditions

‘Reprehensible’: Trudeau abortion policy raises ire of U.S. right

“This man is reprehensible,” tweeted former White House staffer Sebastian Gorka

‘I shouldn’t have to have a husband:’ Winnipeg woman criticizes men-only club

Jodi Moskal discovered the Winnipeg Squash Racquet Club continues to ban women as members, as it has done since opening in 1909.

Most Read