Oliver man faces further jail time for cocaine possession

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PENTICTON - It was a case of three times unlucky for an Oliver man caught on separate occasions with cocaine.

Kyle J. Lezard  pleaded guilty to three counts of possession on March 3 in Penticton court and will spend the next 22 days in jail after accounting for the time he has already been in custody.

Crown prosecutor Matthew Canzer told court Lezard caught the attention of an Oliver police officer on March 24, 2015, after Lezard pulled into an Oliver gas station where the officer was fuelling up. 

A check of Lezard’s vehicle tag led to a check of Lezard himself, who the officer discovered was a prohibited driver. A search of Lezard’s person revealed 13.3 grams of cocaine contained in a prescription medicine bottle.

Lezard’s second infraction took place in Penticton on May 13, 2015, when RCMP responded to three complaints regarding a drunken individual walking east on Fairview Road, heading towards Huth Avenue. He was arrested for public intoxication and a subsequent search revealed a glass pipe and several small packages containing a total of two grams of cocaine and a small quantity of marijuana buds.

Lezard’s third infraction occurred May 18, 2015, when police responded to reports of two men arguing on the Osoyoos Indian Band at 2:30 a.m.

Police found Lezard, half dressed and in an impaired state. They arrested him for public intoxication, and while transporting him to the Oliver detachment, noticed him trying to stuff his wallet out the cruiser window. A search of the back seat afterwards revealed a small bag containing .29 grams of cocaine.

Canzer noted Lezard’s record of 13 previous convictions, for both possession and trafficking charges. He asked Judge Gregory Koturbash for a sentence of 30 days consecutive on each of the three counts.

Defence lawyer James Pennington said his 31 year old client, who recently relocated to Kamloops, “obviously had a substance abuse problem.” He said his client was willing to undergo rehab, having undertaken an addiction treatment program four years ago.

Judge Koturbash noted Lezard’s insight into his behaviour, his willingness to undergo further treatment and the systemic factors involved in Lezard’s behaviour as an aboriginal offender.

He sentenced Lezard to 30 days each on the first two counts of possession, in addition to a 30 day concurrent sentence on the third count. He also placed Lezard on probation for 12 months, in addition to waiving $300 in victim surcharge fees.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad at sarstad@infonews.ca or call 250-488-3065. To contact the editor, email mjones@infonews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

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