09/20/2012 09:34 EDT | Updated 11/20/2012 05:12 EST

Maygan Sensenberger Guilty: Senator Rod Zimmer's Wife Enters Plea


Maygan Sensenberger, wife of Senator Rod Zimmer, has pleaded guilty in a case that has grabbed the attention of a nation.

Sensenberger pleaded guilty Thursday to causing a disturbance on a flight. She has been given a 12-month suspended sentence with probation and must seek counselling and an addiction assessment.


The charge of uttering threats was withdrawn. Sensenberger and Zimmer kissed after the charge was dropped, according to Sun News' Lisa Mrazek.


The case was heard in a Saskatoon domestic violence court.

"People are entitled to travel in public ways like this free of this kind of disturbance," Judge Marilyn Gray told the court, according to The Star Phoenix.

Sensenberger's lawyer, Leslie Sullivan, said media coverage of the case has been unwarranted and that comments online have caused the couple stress, according to the Phoenix.

Sensenberger had been expected to enter a plea on Tuesday, but Sullivan appeared in her stead and asked for an adjournment, which was granted.

Sullivan hinted on Tuesday that the media circus surrounding the couple was responsible for the request. "When we deal with this case it's going to take a little bit more time than normal, so we chose that day and time because all parties were available and it worked for everyone," Leslie said, according to the Regina Leader-Post.

The charges stem from an incident which occurred last month on an Air Canada flight from Ottawa to Saskatoon. Sensenberger is alleged to have threatened to slit Zimmer's throat. The much more serious charge of endangering the safety of an aircraft was dropped last month.

However, some witnesses to the incident have said Sensenberger became upset when Zimmer began to feel ill and that she was simply trying to get her husband medical attention.

Alcohol is thought to have been a factor in the incident. Sensenberger has a previous DUI conviction stemming from an accident in her native Collingwood, Ont, in 2008.

Now that Sensenberger has pleaded guilty, as she did in the impaired driving case, it may make her life significantly more complicated.

A guilty plea could result in an order to seek treatment and counselling. The order to seek counselling may force Sensenberger to stay in Saskatoon, according to Metro.

Sensenberger and Zimmer live in Ottawa.

The case has garnered widespread attention in Canada, and around the world, largely due to the couple's age difference. Zimmer is 69 and Sensenberger is 23.

Photos of the pair's world travels and posh wedding posted to Facebook also helped catapult the story to the top of the headlines. Access to those photos has since been cut off.

With files from the Canadian Press


Photo gallery Inside The Life Of Maygan Sensenberger See Gallery