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South Okanagan thief holds hope rehab will change his ways

The man who tried to break into the Kaleden Petro Canada gas station last September pled guilty to a number of charges in Penticton court today, March 22, 2016.
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March 22, 2016 - 5:01 PM

PENTICTON - A Penticton man responsible for a motorcycle theft and other mayhem will be released from jail to begin rehab in a Vernon treatment centre following sentencing in Penticton court this afternoon.

Jesse Cory Tasker pleaded guilty today, March 22, to several charges arising from several incidents including two counts of driving while prohibited, possession of stolen property under and over $5,000, and breach of recognizance.

Crown Prosecutor Mallory Treddenick said Tasker was stopped by Kelowna RCMP on May 14, 2015 at 2:30 a.m. on Highway 33 after the officer heard a loud bang come from his motorcycle. Upon inspection, it was revealed Tasker was a prohibited driver.

On July 15, at approximately 5:30 a.m. police and ambulance were called to a Penticton residence where a man was found with an arrow in his back.

The man was identified as Tasker by police. A nearby homeowner told police the Yamaha motorcycle Tasker had been riding was owned by someone else, while Tasker explained he had taken the bike from the location he’d been at in order to get help for the arrow wound. He said the owner of the motorcycle owed him $4,000.

The owner of the bike was an Okanagan Falls resident who had no idea Tasker had taken it, court heard.

On Sept. 11, 2015, Tasker was spotted by an RCMP officer carrying a bike helmet on Victoria Road in Summerland.

Police stopped Tasker near a motorcycle parked on the side of the road. The ignition wiring was hanging out of the bike and Tasker was arrested. A search revealed he was carrying a screwdriver, pliers and other tools in a backpack, as well as two surveillance cameras that were later identified as belonging to the Kaleden Petro Canada gas station.

A close inspection of the bike’s vehicle identification number revealed it had been altered. The bike was eventually found to have been stolen from a Kelowna address on Sept. 8.

Tasker was sent to jail in early January.

Treddenick told Judge Gale Sinclair Tasker’s guilty pleas cleaned up a number of files, asking for a total of 89 days in jail and two years probation, in addition to $600 in fines for driving while prohibited.

Defence lawyer Robert Maxwell told court his 33-year-old client had done his time, adding Tasker had enough time in jail to reflect on the fact drugs weren’t working for him.

Tasker told Judge Sinclair he’d found a bed in a rehab facility in Vernon, beginning Thursay March 24.

"That's all well and good, but what are you going to do between now and Thursday?" Judge Sinclair asked.

Judge Sinclair handed down a sentence of 14 days concurrent on two prohibited driving charges, in addition to 30 days consecutive for theft of the Kaleden security cameras, and another 30 days, consecutive, for breach of recognizance, amounting to time served. He also faces $600 in fines and a two year probationary period with restrictions including several “no-go” situations, no drugs, alcohol or weapons and restrictions from driving for two years.

“He’s like his lawyer - indigent,” Maxwell joked, asking for waiving of victim surcharges, to which Judge Sinclair agreed.

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.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016
InfoTel News Ltd

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