Sunday, August 24, 2008

Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do when they come for you

Law enforcement issues kept the pages full over the course of August, as the criminal element didn't disappoint when it came to getting into trouble and facing their punishment.

And in the case of one well known offender from the Prince Rupert area who brought his one man crime wave to Prince George, taking the judges advice perhaps might have been the wiser course of action in August.

Release of chronic offender prompts warning
By Kris Schumacher
The Daily News
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Pages one and two

One of Prince Rupert’s most prolific criminals was sentenced to time served and released Tuesday after appearing in Prince George Provincial Court.

Perry Willoughby Drake, 48, was sentenced to time served on Aug. 5 by Prince George provincial court Judge Michael Brecknell, who took note of the 55 days Drake had spent in custody since his arrest June 13.

On Feb. 12, Drake received a one-year conditional sentence for breaking into a Prince Rupert board shop. The terms of that sentence included a 10 p.m.-to-6 a.m. curfew and a requirement to stay at least 25 metres away from the board shop.

In June, Drake was found by police walking late at night along a sidewalk near a Prince Rupert inn associated with drug activity and also not far from the board shop.

Drake said he had gone to a hospital emergency room to seek admission for a detox bed, and the curfew placed on him made exceptions for visits to a hospital emergency room for urgent medical reasons.

Crown counsel said the exception to the curfew was restricted to true medical emergencies and not more routine medical matters, and added that his route to and from the hospital was indirect.

The Crown also drew attention to Drake’s 79 previous convictions.

Judge Brecknell said a lot of Drake’s story about why he was out after the curfew was fanciful. However, he said there was enough evidence to find that Drake had actually talked to a doctor in the emergency room.

“However, he has not satisfied me he was experiencing a medical emergency,” Brecknell concluded. “He is in breach of his conditional sentence order.”

“You are a prolific offender,” the judge told Drake. “You will come to the attention of police whatever you do. If you are serious about wanting to change, now’s the time.”

Change is exactly what the Prince Rupert RCMP hope Drake and other chronic repeat offenders in the city will decide to do, as three members were recently assigned to target the top10 prolific offenders in the community.

Prolific or ‘repeat’ offenders are the primary objective of the Crime Reduction Team, comprised of Const. Jane Coffin, Const. Lisa Ramsay and Const. Jordan Forman, who are also studying crime trends and the social problems that contribute to crime.

“When these individuals are active, they consume a lot of our time,” said Const. Coffin. “We could deal with these people every night. Most of them are involved in property crime, the break-and-enters and the shoplifting, Most of them have addiction problems so their cries are going towards supporting their addictions.”

At the end of June, six of Prince Rupert’s 10 prolific offenders were in jail, most of whom were in custody for breaching their conditions and had been remanded, awaiting their next appearance in court. Coffin said she doesn’t know whether Drake will return to Prince Rupert or not, but that if he does return to the community, the Crime Reduction Team will make contact with him and ensure he adheres to his conditional-sentence.

Brecknell ordered Drake released Tuesday afternoon, and instructed him to see a conditional-sentence supervisor in Prince George immediately afterwards.

With files from the Prince George Citizen.

Former Rupertite gets five month jail sentence
By Paul Strickland
The Prince George Citizen
Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Man sentenced after threats during shoplifting incident
Written by Citizen staff
Monday, 18 August 2008

Perry Willoughby Drake, 48, was sentenced Monday to five months in jail on pleading guilty to shoplifting, uttering threats and failing to observe one of the terms of his conditional sentence order -- to keep the peace and be of good behaviour.

Police received a call from a loss prevention officer at a large pharmacy about a man who had stolen two packages of socks worth $19.98. When the man was confronted, he said he would come back with a baseball bat and also shoot the loss-prevention officer with a gun.

Prince George provincial court judge Michael Brecknell cancelled the conditional sentence order before imposing the jail sentence.

Drake's criminal record had previously been made up mostly of property crimes and breaches of court orders, court heard.

"This time he used a threat," Brecknell said. "The main concern is that Mr. Drake has upped the ante. Previously he did not have a history of violence."

The judge decided not to impose probation.

No comments: