Cops cracking down on 'fowl' play this holiday - numerous charges laid

Kyra Hoggan
By Kyra Hoggan
December 21st, 2010

 Castlegar RCMP are wishing everyone a joyful holiday season – but reminding revellers that they won’t think twice about chucking you in a holding cell if you get behind the wheel after indulging in too much ‘Christmas spirits’, or if you play the Grinch by committing crimes during this festive season.

“We want to see everyone have a wonderful holiday – so we’re prepared to do what it takes to stop anyone who tries to ruin things for others this year,” said Castlegar RCMP detachment commander Laurel Mathew. “You know, I’m not sure whether they serve Christmas dinner in the detachment holding cells. You might get cranberry sauce or something, but I still don’t think it would be as enjoyable as spending the day at home or with friends.   “And I’m guessing it would be hard to carve the turkey in a place where knives are prohibited …”   Tongue-in-cheek commentary aside, Mathew said there’s always a handful of people who celebrate the season irresponsibly, and another handful who seem somewhat lacking in the spirit of giving.   Police were kept busy with 96 calls last week – and with the completion of files such as this one, from November:   “On Nov. 19, a male entered the Uptown liquor store in Castlegar and proceeded to put a full-sized bottle of liquor down the front of his pants ….and did not stop to pay for this,” Mathew said. “The store clerk noted the bottle missing during a count later in the shift, and upon viewing the video surveillance footage inside the store, which is beautiful, provided the video to the RCMP.   “After viewing both the video and the still photos, police identified a local 30-year-old male who was arrested for this theft. He is facing charges of theft under $5000 and will be required to attend court in January 2011.   “In a second instance, a 40-year-old local man was arrested outside Canadian Tire in Castlegar when he attempted to leave a side entrance carrying approximately $500 worth of items that had not been paid for. An alert employee asked the male for a receipt, which of course he couldn’t produce, and the police were called. Charges of theft are being recommended against this male, who will attend court in January 2011.”   Mathew also demonstrated how easily “ho, ho, ho” can become, “Oh – uh oh!” when celebrants choose not to select a designated driver.   “Police were also busy enforcing the Liquor and Motor Vehicle Act. This past weekend, there were three persons who received the three-day license suspension for drinking and driving, one person’s license was suspended for driving while under the influence of marihuana, one youth was given a ticket for having open liquor in public, and four people were charged with being intoxicated in a public place – these included intoxicated people who were urinating in public.   “A 17-year-old youth is also facing charges of possession of a controlled substance when he was stopped for speeding and it was learned that he had drugs on his person,” she added.   “Police would like to wish everyone a happy and safe holiday season, and to again remind everyone: don’t leave items that may be tempting to a thief in your car; arrange for a ride home if you plan on drinking; be wary of your surroundings and valuables as you are out shopping or in public (ie. purses); drive carefully in inclement weather and; leave plenty of room between yourself and the vehicle in front in the event you have to come to a sudden stop.”   All good advice to ensure Castlegar enjoys a holiday of fowl play, instead of suffering the negative effects of foul play.

Categories: Crime