PENTICTON - A Penticton man will have eight months in jail to think of better ways to pay for his dog’s surgery after being sentenced in Penticton court today.
Devon Eric Brazeau, 26, entered guilty pleas on charges of attempted theft, possession of break and enter instruments and breach of probation, two counts which stem from a Jan. 29 incident at Cherry Lane Mall where Brazeau attempted to steal the contents of a display case at Paris Jewellers.
Crown prosecutor Kurt Froehlich told court Brazeau was in breach of a probation order when he walked into Cherry Lane Mall at approximately 2 p.m. on Jan. 29 and smashed a display case at the store before being wrestled to the floor by mall patrons.
The police arrived to find Brazeau lying face down on the floor. Police recovered a dumbbell that had been modified to use as hammer nearby. He was traced to a Ford pickup left running outside the mall and later discovered to be stolen.
Froehlich asked for a seven month sentence citing Brazeau’s 33 convictions for property related crimes and numerous breaches.
Defence lawyer Robert Maxwell told the court his client had an abusive and unstable upbringing, and struggled with addiction.
Maxwell read part of a statement prepared by Brazeau in which the accused explained his dog had recently been attacked by a pit bull, suffering extensive injuries including an amputated leg that resulted in a $3,500 vet bill.
“My client’s thought process is diametrically opposed to Albert Einstein's when these matters come up,” Maxwell said. “This crime wasn’t for drugs — he was trying to raise money for his dog’s operation.”
Brazeau spoke on his own behalf calling the incident “a stupid plan” that was never intended to hurt anyone. He accepted full responsibility for his actions and apologized for threatening or scaring anyone.
Judge Gregory Koturbash gave no weight to Brazeau's reasons.
“We all struggle to pay bills," Koturbash said. "You had to decide whether to put your pet down or pay a vet bill, but that’s not when your troubles began. They started when you failed to report.”
The judge also noted Brazeau’s eight year criminal record and the brazen way he committed the crime.
“There was potential for people to get hurt in the struggle with citizens who were trying to do their duty,” Judge Koturbash said. “You need to start acting like a responsible member of society. The community is tired of people making crime.”
Along with the eight months in jail, Brazeau was also sentenced to 18 months probation, given alcohol and drug prohibitions, and a no-go order to Cherry Lane Mall. He was also ordered to pay $224 to repair the Paris Jeweller display case and $400 in victim surcharge fees.
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