'You will be a lonely old woman': Client testifies Edmonton matchmaking consultant played on insecurities
When Val Taylor met with Edmonton Matchmakers, she says the dating consultant suggested her weight was the reason she hadn't met anyone.
Taylor hesitated over the $7,344 price. She said that made the consultant Sharon Claire Jones go from "nice Claire" to "evil Claire."
According to Taylor, Jones became aggressive and raised her voice to tell her "You will be a lonely old woman by yourself for the rest of your life."
"It made me feel well maybe she's correct and maybe it's the only chance in the world I will have to meet someone," said Taylor, 56.In her testimony Thursday in provincial court, Taylor said the appointment at Edmonton Matchmakers on July 17, 2015 left her feeling defeated and afraid.Taylor was the only witness at one-day trial for Jones who is charged under the Fair Trading Act after an investigation by Service Alberta.Jones has pleaded not guilty to exerting undue pressure on consumers to enter into a transaction.A conviction for the offence carries a maximum penalty of $300,000 and two years in jail.Jones occasionally shook her head as she listened to Taylor's testimony but didn't take the stand.
Crown prosecutor Fraser Genuis argued Jones played on his client's insecurities saying, "If that's not seeking to exploit the vulnerability of someone seeking a matchmaking service, I'm not sure what is."
Defence lawyer Evan McIntyre questioned why Taylor had only complained to Service Alberta in April 2017, nearly two years after her appointment.
He argued Taylor willingly signed the contract but her story "keeps getting worse."McIntyre pointed out that Taylor hadn't protested at the time, or cancelled her contract before the first date."You sat there in silence didn't you?," said McIntyre during cross examination."Silence and fear," Taylor responded.