Williams Lake prolific offender program still active

Williams Lake city council wants a prolific offender program back in Williams Lake, however, the RCMP say the program is still active.

Williams Lake city council wants a prolific offender program back in Williams Lake as soon as possible, however, the RCMP say the program is still active in the city.

At the regular council meeting Tuesday, Surinderpal Rathor asked council to endorse finding funds as soon as possible for a program that would identify individuals responsible for using weapons, such as machetes and bear spray, and that they be dealt with accordingly. Council also passed a motion to set up a meeting with Williams Lake RCMP Inspector Warren Brown.

“Last week my phone started ringing off the hook with people telling me they are afraid to go out. They were telling me that people are using weapons during the day. People are calling the police. It’s the same people that are committing the crimes day after day.”

The Williams Lake RCMP told the Tribune the Prolific Offender Program is still up and running. It’s never stopped, despite the withdrawal of funding from government in June 2012.

“Locally it was .4 of a human resource position so what’s essentially happened is ourselves and the other agencies that are involved with the prolific offender program have continued with it, as it was, prior to June, and are doing it off the side of our desk. Instead of that .4 person doing the administrative work, the RCMP have taken that on,” Staff Sgt. Ken Brissard said Wednesday.

At the end of the day, the RCMP and the other partners involved in the program, saw value in the initiative so they’ve continued with it. Nothing’s changed other than the funding component.

“We meet regularly and had our prolific offender meeting yesterday. I believe right now we have 12 who are identified and know they’ve been identified as prolific offenders. We reach out to them to try and offer them assistance, “Brissard said, explaining two of the 12 have been “voted off the list by the group.” One because he has been relocated and the other because of his inactivity.

“It’s a success story. Can we attribute that 100 per cent to the fact that he was in the prolific offender program? No. There’s nothing to say that because of the program he’s changed his behaviour, but I know it’s helped.”

Brissard admitted he’s an optimistic person that sees the “glass half full”, and “yes” there are ebbs and flows in crime rates in Williams Lake.

“Essentially the way we’ve put it here in the last few months is that we’ve had a perfect storm. We had a group of about 12 people all out of jail at once. I’m not minimizing that, but I think you have to say it’s a small percentage that create havoc for the mass majority. You make  your own luck and we were lucky because we’ve got some naughty people behind bars again.”

A core group of agencies working in areas such as probation, housing and mental health team up with the RCMP to administer the program, all “bringing something to the table.”

ion of B.C. Municipalities conference mayor and council met with Minister of Justice Shirley Bond and asked if funding would be restored for  prolific offender programs.

In a letter dated Oct. 11, Bond wrote to council that her ministry staff will explore if options exist for restoring funding and will contact the city. So far the city has not heard back.

Rathor said the provincial government has equal responsibility for the citizens of Williams Lake as the city does. He wanted staff to get on the phone first thing Wednesday morning to set up a meeting.

“To me safety is more important than anything else. Why are we putting money into sidewalks when safety should be our first priority,” he said.

The RCMP would welcome restored funding for prolific offender programming because the funding will ease up funds for other programming, Brissard said.

 

 

 

Just Posted

Fire claims two historic buildings in downtown Williams Lake

Several other businesses damaged by water used to fight the blaze

TRU hosts second round of public consultations

A dozen concerned lakecity locals came out to the Pioneer Complex to provide their feedback

Global Climate Strike and March a well-attended call to action

Generations of concerned citizens marched on city hall led by the youth of today

Update: Firefighters battle blaze in downtown Williams Lake

Diamonds and Dust Entertainment Lounge destroyed by fire, crews on scene

Air quality back to low risk in Williams Lake after firefighters extinguish downtown building fires

Crews continue to clean up after fire destroyed two downtown businesses

PHOTOS: Young protesters in B.C. and beyond demand climate change action

Many demonstaers were kids and teens who skipped school to take part

Walmart to quit selling e-cigarettes amid vaping backlash

U.S.’s largest retailer points to ‘growing’ complications in federal, state and local regulations

Former B.C. lifeguard gets house arrest for possession of child porn

Cees Vanderniet of Grand Forks will serve six months of house arrest, then two years’ probation

Crown alleges resentment of ex-wife drove Oak Bay father to kill his daughters

Patrick Weir alleged in his closing arguments that Andrew Berry is responsible for the deaths of his daughters

How to react to Trudeau’s racist photos? With humility, B.C. prof says

‘We are now treating racism as a crime that you cannot recover from’

‘I’d do it again,’ says B.C. man who swam naked, drunk in Toronto shark tank

David Weaver, of Nelson, was drunk when he went to Ripley’s Aquarium in Toronto on Oct. 12 2018

Victoria man spots online photo of his totem pole 11 years after it was stolen

Mark Trueman restored the pole himself before it was stolen off of his property in Duncan

Trudeau seeks meeting with Singh to apologize for blackface, brownface photos

‘I will be apologizing to him personally as a racialized Canadian,’ Trudeau said Friday

Charges stayed against Alberta RCMP officer in alleged off-duty Whistler assault

Const. Vernon Hagen instead completed an alternative measures program

Most Read