Two men behind the brutal robbery and assault of a Belleville, Ont., convenience store owner learned their fate Wednesday.
The owner of “Ro’s General Store” was stabbed several times during the armed robbery in October 2019. Jason Ro nearly died during the ordeal.
On Sept. 29, 2021, the pair pleaded guilty to several charges that will send them to prison for years. In return, the Crown dropped the more serious charge of attempted murder.
Sad, shocking, senseless and callous – these are the words the justice of the peace used to describe the crimes committed by Kyle Arsenault and Jordan Earle in October 2019 when the two men stormed into a north Belleville convenience store. They used bear spray throughout the store and eventually assaulted and stabbed its owner, Jason Ro, eight times. The pair had moved to Belleville from Moncton, N.B., just a few months prior.
The two were arrested and charged three days after the incident, Arsenault at his residence in Belleville while Earle was apprehended after getting off a passenger train in Moncton.
The two appeared in a Belleville courtroom Wednesday to plead guilty to the lesser charge of aggravated assault after the Crown accepted that the two did not go to the convenience store with the intent to kill Jason Ro.
Crown attorney Lee Burgess explained, “it was the circumstances thereafter where Mr. Ro pursued them out that caused then to assault him at that point in time. So looking at the overall range of sentences, nine years for these crimes is what we felt was appropriate.”
The convenience store robbery was the culmination of a two-day crime spree.
Arsenault and Earle also pleaded guilty to a laundry list of additional offences including mischief, break and enter, arson and in Earle’s case, theft of a vehicle.
They’ve been sentenced to nine years minus time served for the charge of aggravated assault. They’ll also have to submit a DNA sample and both will face a firearms prohibition for 10 years upon their release from prison.