November 14, 2013 - 10:28 AM
ARSONIST FOUND GUILTY OF 2 OF 3 CHARGES
KELOWNA - The man accused of starting a house fire during a drug-induced crime spree in a Rutland neighbourhood Feb. 2, 2012 was acquitted of arson of an inhabited property but found guilty on two other counts of arson damaging property and breaking and entering.
Judge Jane Cartwright said although Brandon Seberras-Pick admitted to police he set a fire outside a home, the description he gave did not match the findings of investigators. Both RCMP and fire investigators testified that the fire was started in a stack of plastic furniture near the Large Avenue home and not on the wood siding as Seberras-Pick told them.
Seberras-Pick told police he was high on psychedelic mushrooms that night and also drank a large quantity of beer before starting his spree that included lighting the gas tank of a car with a cigarette lighter, breaking into a home on Feedham Ave. to steal frozen food and a waffle iron and using a lighter to start a fire on the siding of a house before walking away.
Seberras-Pick was 18 years old at the time.
“His memory is foggy,” Cartwright said during her ruling in Kelowna Provincial Court Nov. 12. “The evidence does not prove (Seberras-Pick) set that fire.”
Cartwright called the house fire charge “the most disturbing” of the three, and said the family of four sleeping in the home “could easily have met their demise.” She also said however, that unlike the evidence of the car fire and breaking and entering charges presented by Crown prosecutor David Grabavach, the arson evidence failed to prove that the accused was the one who set the fire.
Following the ruling, Cartwright granted a request by Grabavach for psychiatric evaluation prior to sentencing.
“We need to know what’s going on in this young man’s head,” Grabavach said.
Sentencing for the charges of breaking and entering and arson damaging property is scheduled for Jan. 14, 2014.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013