January 22, 2016 - 6:30 PM
KAMLOOPS - A judge handed a local man a one-year jail sentence and a longer probation term than suggested by Crown for using a stolen truck to break into an Aberdeen computer store last summer.
Michael Huska, born 1976, pleaded guilty in Kamloops Supreme Court today, Jan. 22, to several charges arising from the incident, including break and enter, possession of stolen property and theft of a motor vehicle.
Around 4 a.m. August 17, 2015 a stolen truck was used to ram through the front door of Josto Computers on Hillside Drive.
“Mr. Huska along with others participated in what appears to be a spree of thefts and at least one break and enter,” Justice Dev Dley said at Huska’s sentence hearing. “These activities appear to have been planned and done with some foresight. There seems to be a regular pattern of committing thefts and then disposing of the one vehicle that was involved in the break and enter at Josto."
Huska’s lawyer, Sheldon Tate, requested a nine-month jail sentence followed by probation, while Crown prosecutor Monica Fras argued a 12-month sentence and one-year probation was more appropriate.
Dley said there were some aggravating factors to suggest he impose a harsher sentence. He noted the break and enter along with other offences were pre-meditated and said Huska’s criminal record was a "significant aggravating factor" as he had 19 previous convictions dating back to 1998. While the judge acknowledged Huska’s addiction to crystal meth contributed to his criminal activity - the profits of which he used to supplement himself - he noted previous convictions on his record pre-dated his addiction.
To mitigate the sentence, Dley acknowledged Huska’s guilty pleas and participation in substance abuse programs along with counselling in jail.
With credited time in custody, Huska has roughly six months remaining on his sentence. Dley decided to impose a two-year probation period — a year longer than suggested by the Crown.
For the first six months of his probation, he will have curfew restrictions.
Huska is to submit a DNA order into the national criminal database, not possess weapons and not have contact with six people. He also is prohibited from going to Josto Computers and is ordered to pay back around $3,000 in restitution before his probation ends.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016