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'A living nightmare': Winnipeg woman sentenced following campaign of harassment against man after online date

Winnipeg court house
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A Winnipeg woman was sentenced to house arrest after a single date with a man she met online culminated in her harassing him for years and spurred false allegations that resulted in the innocent man being arrested three times.

According to court documents, Jennifer Plantz, 34, pleaded guilty to criminal harassment and assault for 22 false police complaints after she claimed a man whom she had met through the dating app, Tinder, had stalked and sexually assaulted her.

“This innocent person was put through hell,” said Provincial Court Judge Raymond Wyant at the sentencing hearing on Monday.

Plantz was handed a 15-month conditional sentence under house arrest, followed by three years of unsupervised probation and no contact or communication with the victim.

“The behaviour you exhibited toward this gentleman is beyond the pale, it is almost unspeakable … this was a living nightmare for this man,” said Wyant.

“I cannot imagine how awful, how terrified, and how upended his life has been since you entered his life and became involved in these actions.”

Plantz and this man’s only date was in 2016 after the two met on Tinder.

Crown attorney, Laura Martin, said the victim attended the date and left immediately after.

“At no point were the two intimate,” said Martin, adding that the meeting was the only consensual contact between the pair.

In 2018, there were some online messages sent, but the pair didn’t see one another again until Feb. 23, 2019, when Plantz gained access to the man’s apartment building by unknown means.

The man did not allow her inside and said she appeared to be huffing on an aerosol canister. Later that day, she contacted the Winnipeg Police Service (WPS) and reported an assault. Police observed her behaviour to be “erratic and nonsensical.”

The following day, Plantz contacted WPS and reported ongoing harassment. She stated that he threatened to hurt her and demanded that she be his girlfriend. When questioned, she left the police station out of frustration. It was believed by police that she had “fabricated this incident.”

According to Martin, on Mar. 11, 2019, Plantz went back to the man’s residence, pulled the fire alarm, and said she had come to retrieve personal items from the victim’s suite. However, she had never been inside. Police entered the suite to check for said items and nothing was located.

On Mar. 13, 2019, Plantz called police again and claimed the man assaulted her. Police discounted her claim when it was found she had been admitted to a psychiatric ward during the time of the alleged incident, and once again, observed erratic behaviour.

Plantz didn’t contact the man again until Jan. 1, 2022, when she sent him messages via text pretending to be someone else he’d met the evening before. The man told Plantz to leave him alone or he’d call the police, but Plantz “indicated the police would laugh at him.”

Days later, Plantz claimed the man sexually assaulted her at Club Regent Casino and “threatened her, and stalked her.” Video surveillance showed they had no interaction on this night, but before police were able to determine this was a false allegation, a warrant for sexual assault was submitted for his arrest, with Plantz applying for a protection order against him. He spent a night in jail.

Just a few days later, the man was arrested again and spent two more days in custody after Plantz alleged he contacted her again, breaching the protection order. Charges were stayed until April of 2022.

From May 2022 through September 2022 police visited the man’s home three more times ordering him to stay away from Plantz over various false claims of “harassment, threats, and assault.” On one of the dates, Plantz told police the man “had a gun and was coming to assault her,” said Martin.

In September, she told police that he had assaulted her and provided injury pictures, which were used on a later date to support another assault claim.

On Oct. 30, 2022, following another false claim, the man was arrested at a traffic stop and his vehicle impounded. He was taken to police headquarters where upon seeing his history, police released him.

According to the agreed statement of facts, Plantz made 22 claims against the victim between 2019 and 2022.

CTV News Winnipeg asked Winnipeg police for a response as to why officers arrested the victim multiple times after previous allegations were determined to be unfounded. A spokesperson for Winnipeg police declined comment.

“It would not be appropriate for us to comment on the evidence provided in court on any matter,” a spokesperson said in a statement.

While waiting for a ride from his boss, the victim was approached by Plantz and assaulted the man by “shoving him with both hands (causing him) to stumble back into the building,” said the Crown attorney.

The man told police he was the one actually being stalked and that he has taken steps to block her calls and ability to contact him on social media. He also had to move three times, as well as change his number multiple times.

In his victim impact statement, the man said Plantz’s actions severely affected his life.

“I can no longer answer the door, phone calls, social media, without getting anxiety and fearing it is you or the police come to harass me again.”

He also said the years of harassment have led him to experience emotional and mental breakdowns.

“It has made me insecure and scared to even meet or try to talk to women for fear they will or could do the same thing,” said the victim.

Plantz declined an opportunity to say something in court.

The court heard that she had been diagnosed with numerous mental health issues, including bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder. She also has a history of methamphetamine use.

Court heard Plantz lived through an unstable upbringing, suffered from abuse and also experienced homelessness.

In 2023, she was arrested in regards to a different incident.

According to defence lawyer Tom Rees, since 2023 she has been in supported housing for victims of trauma and addiction, and has been focused on living a sober lifestyle.

Although Judge Wyant said he was, "Impressed with the progress she’s made, and she’s on the road to rehabilitation, a conditional sentence is in order.”

He called Plantz’s actions “clearly a waste of police resources,” and noted how they've had a devastating impact on the victim.

“That man’s nightmare is never going to end,” said Wyant.

  

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