Herbert Hildebrandt convicted of assaulting octogenarian over a sign

Herbert Hildebrandt was convicted of assaulting Jack Dykxhoorn in St. Thomas Ontario Court of Justice on Monday, August 22.

Mr. Dykxhoorn, 84 at the time of the assault, Dec. 10, 2020, was pushed to the ground by Mr. Hildebrandt, approximately half the age and twice the size of Mr. Dykxhoorn. Both men live in Malahide.

Mr. Hildebrandt drove from work right to the Thompson family farmhouse, across from the Church of God (Restoration), after Mr. Dykxhoorn and his friends planted a “Be Kind, Wear a Mask” sign near the entrance to the church. Mr. Hildebrandt parked so his pickup truck blocked in Mr. Dykxhoorn’s. Mr. Hildebrandt exited his truck, confronted Mr. Dykxhoorn, and pushed him. Mr. Dykxhoorn stumbled back and hit his own pickup truck as he fell to the ground.

Justice Mark Poland, in his decision, rejected much of Mr. Hildebrandt’s testimony, in which Mr. Hildebrandt claimed self-defence and that Mr. Dykxhoorn bumped him three times with his belly.
“The Crown has proved the actions of Mr. Hildebrandt were unreasonable.”

It was not “a defensive push.”

Justice Poland said Mr. Hildebrandt brought the confrontation to Mr. Dykxhoorn, who had been having coffee with his friends before they decided to put the sign up near the church property.
Mr. Hildebrandt’s evidence, said Justice Poland that he couldn’t turn around as he feared for his safety, “was simply ludicrous.”

“He could have simply walked away.”

The next court date for Mr. Hildebrandt is August 30, to pick a date for sentencing.

Joe Webber, left, and Jack Dykxhoorn stand beside a “Be Kind, Wear a Mask” sign they put up on the roadside at the entrance to Aylmer Church of God on Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020. Not long after, across the road, Mr. Dykxhoorn was pushed to the ground by Herbert Hildebrandt in a confrontation, an action which led to Mr. Hildebrandt being found guilty of assault on Monday, Aug. 22. (AE/contributed by Walt Morgan)