|L to R: Court officer, defense lawyer: Susan von Achten, tries to obscure identity of accused: Christopher Husbands with a notebook at Old City Hall, June 4, 2012. (Sketch by Pam Davies)
TORONTO - A 23-year-old man accused of murdering two and wounding five in June's Eaton Centre shooting rampage was found guilty Wednesday of sexually assaulting a 22-year-old Toronto woman two years ago.
Justice Rick Libman convicted Christopher Husbands, 23, of sexual assault and will pass sentence on Oct. 23.
Husbands testified he had consensual sex with the woman in 2010.
Libman rejected Husband's testimony as "implausible and incredible," saying he agreed with the prosecution's view that Husbands "was just going to take what he wanted."
When Husbands was arrested in the fall of 2010, two weeks after the assault, he gave a vague account to police, saying he had no idea what time or on what day of the week his sexual encounter occurred.
"I didn't sexually assault no one," Husbands told police in 2010.
But at trial, he knew the encounter happened between 10:30 p.m. and 11 p.m. on Sunday Oct. 31, 2010, and provided other details. He said the encounter stopped as he realized the woman was crying.
Husbands testified he didn't know why she was crying because she had been a willing participant until that moment.
Libman found that Husbands' richly detailed account -- two years after the event when he told police he could not recollect any details -- was one of the reasons he found his testimony to be unbelievable.
Husbands has been in custody since June when he surrendered and subsequently charged with two counts of first-degree murder and five counts of attempted murder in the Eaton Centre shooting.
Two weeks before he allegedly opened fire in the Eaton Centre, Husbands was a part-time City of Toronto employee working with kids in an after-school program.
He supervised children at Stan Wadlow Clubhouse in East York in the after-school recreation care (ARC) program -- from November 2011 to May 2012 -- while on $4,000 house arrest bail for the sexual assault.