Convicted rapist granted full parole

A man convicted of sexually assaulting three women in the Halifax area has been granted full parole upon completion of day parole.

Matthew Albert Percy is serving a sentence of seven years, seven months for a series of sexual assaults dating back to 2013. He was granted day parole for a period of six months late last year.

"The Board believes that your current offences and criminal history are aggravating to your risk to reoffend," the Parole Board of Canada wrote in its decision dated July 6, 2024.

"On a positive note, you have been on release to the community currently without issue for the most part and have been able to meet expectations in the community."

While on parole, Percy is subject to conditions to:

  • Have no direct or indirect contact with his victims or their family members.

  • Report all sexual and non-sexual relationships and friendships with females and any change in the status of relationships/friendships to his parole supervisor.

  • Not consume, purchase or possess alcohol, or enter any establishment whose primary source of income is derived from the sale or consumption of alcohol.

  • Not associate or communicate with anyone known or suspected to be involved in criminal activity.

In two of the cases, Percy met young women in the bar district in downtown Halifax, then accompanied them to residences elsewhere in the city, where the assaults took place.

In the third case, Percy assaulted a female friend after they had spent the evening together in her home. While that assault happened in 2013, the woman didn't go to police until 2018, after she heard of the other charges against him.

A fourth woman also accused Percy of sexual assault but he was acquitted in that case.

Percy was working as a groundskeeper at Saint Mary's University in Halifax when the first charges were laid. Evidence at the trials showed the assaults were aggressive and the victims were impaired by alcohol.

Offender 'manipulated' his victims

In two of the cases, Percy used his cellphone to take videos of his victims. The women were unaware of the recordings until they were contacted by police.

"You intentionally manipulated the victims with the intentions of forcing sexual intercourse, grooming them through kindness and an 'I'm a nice guy' approach, in some instances taking advantage of their altered state of awareness as they had been heavily consuming alcohol," the board noted.

"Near the end of your hearing for day parole, you took responsibility for your actions against the victims and of wanting to make amends."

The board noted while Percy was on day parole, there was only one issue, when he "made an inappropriate comment toward a female staff, but this issue was addressed." Other than that incident, the board said he was "said to be respectful with staff and helpful around the halfway house."

Percy has a job, the board said, and has completed a rehabilitation program, attended Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, participated in psychological counselling and worked with a chaplain. It also noted he's been keeping in touch with friends and family, going to the gym, playing basketball and spending time with a female friend recently.

"The Board believes that you have developed pro-social activities to aid you in managing your risk factors in the community."