Man charged with bigamy after a police traffic stop revealed he had been living a double life
BY DEAN PRITCHARD, WINNIPEG SUN
FIRST POSTED: WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 09, 2016 06:50 PM CST | UPDATED: WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 09, 2016 06:54 PM CST
A Winnipeg man already under investigation for fraud was charged with bigamy after a police traffic stop revealed he had been living a double life.
David Connors pleaded guilty Wednesday to six counts of fraud and one count each of bigamy, perjury and obstruction of justice. Judge Ted Lismer sentenced him to the equivalent of 23 months time served and three years probation.
Court heard Winnipeg police had received a tip Connors might be fleeing to his native New Zealand when on July 30, 2015, officers pulled his car over to arrest him.
Connors identified a woman in the car as his wife, Crown attorney Terry McComb said. Police reviewed the vehicle registration and found it was registered to another woman, also identified as Connors’ wife.
Connors had married the first woman in July 2014 and the second just nine months later, Mccomb said. Neither woman knew the other existed.
Connors “presented as a very successful businessman” who supposedly did a lot of work travelling at night, McComb said.
But Connors’ business — Shields Plumbing and Heating — was a sham, just like his marriages. Court heard Connors misrepresented himself as a certified plumber while taking on jobs he wasn’t capable of finishing. In December 2014, a city church paid Connors $8,000 to replace a boiler. The installation didn’t pass inspection and two other plumbing companies had to finish the work, McComb said.
In another case, a Winnipeg businessman paid Connors $5,000 to replace the plumbing in his building. He later went bankrupt after the job had to be redone by another plumber.
In the largest of his frauds, Connors took $55,000 from a Winnipeg investment firm to install heating and air conditioning units in its office building and then did none of the work.
Connors was charged with perjury after he submitted a letter to court for a June 2015 child support proceeding claiming he had no income at a time when “there were hundreds of thousands of dollars flowing through his bank account,” McComb said.
While in custody, Connors participated in all the rehabilitative counselling available to him “and was finally able to admit what he did was wrong,” said defence lawyer David Walker.
Walker said Connors was neglected by his parents as a child and linked the bigamy charge to the absence of a positive female role model early in his life.
“He did everything he could to make the women in his life feel happy,” Walker said. “And when another one came around, he tried to do the same thing again.”