(Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

(Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

CRD supports call for public inquiry into release of prolific offenders

Williams Lake city council have called for a review of the judicial system

The Cariboo Regional District is adding its support to the city of Williams Lake’s call for a public inquiry into the release of prolific offenders.

On Feb. 9, city council voted unanimously for an ‘emergency review of the weak and ineffective judicial sentencing of prolific offenders in Williams Lake.’

Mayor Walt Cobb forwarded a request for endorsement from the CRD which directors voted in favour of during the regular meeting Thursday, Feb. 11.

CRD chair Margo Wagner said she will write a letter of support, and will send it to the chamber of commerces in the region and other regional districts.

Quesnel Mayor Bob Simpson said he empathizes with Cobb and agreed having a collective voice will help bring the issue to the provincial government.

Cobb said the city is emailing every municipality in the province.

He also shared information provided by RCMP Insp. Jeff Pelley about three local prolific offenders including one who has generated a minimum of 350 police files since 2009.

Of the 350 files, 217 were 25 per cent related to violent or weapon offences, 24 per cent were property offences, 24 per cent other, 23 per cent for breaches and five per cent drug-related.

“It’s unacceptable,” Cobb said. “This is our 9-1-1 call.”

Cobb has also submitted a resolution to the North Central Local Government Association’s (NCLGA) upcoming convention in May 2021 asking the NCLGA and the Union of B.C. Municipalities to lobby the provincial and federal government to require that courts and judges take into consideration the critical need to apply stricter penalties and ensure adequate incarceration of prolific criminals, including consistent use of electronic monitoring when released on conditions.

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