January 18, 2016 - 5:30 PM
PENTICTON - A Penticton woman in custody since her Jan. 14 arrest for breaching bail conditions will remain in jail a while longer, a Penticton judge said today, Jan.18.
Cortni Isabel Ruth Aitchison appeared facing multiple charges from two separate incidents, including possession of stolen property, theft over and under $5,000, and breach.
Crown Prosecutor Catherine Crockett argued for Aitchison’s detention in custody, noting the accused’s several probation breaches. Crockett described an October 27, 2015 incident in which Aitchison went on a well-planned shoplifting spree at Penticton Walmart.
She said Aitchison was observed by the store’s loss prevention officer wearing store products as she pushed a baby stroller through the women’s clothing section of the store. The stroller had two blankets in it, but contained no baby.
Aitchison was observed tearing the price tag off a toque and wearing it, in addition to placing jewellery and other items into the stroller. She browsed the store, taking spray foam and a flashlight from the hardware section, and a hatchet and Thermos bag from sporting goods before moving on to the Halloween, Health and Beauty, and grocery sections.
She eventually exited the store after passing through a checkout and paying only for a box of cereal and milk. Police were waiting for her upon her exit and a search of her person after her arrest turned up $692 worth of stolen merchandise and 36 grams of marijuana.
Crockett called Aitchison’s shoplifting attempt “sophisticated,” adding the woman had failed to report to her bail supervisor as well as failing to appear to several court appearances since the incident.
On Jan. 14, Aitchison was discovered by police in a Tim Hortons parking lot in a blue Dodge Neon reported stolen by a Penticton resident who had been away from her residence for the past three weeks. The woman’s house was also broken into.
Aitchison had keys to the vehicle in her lap and several personal items belonging to the woman whose home was broken into were found in the vehicle.
Defence lawyer Robert Maxwell noted his 34-year-old client had a care aid diploma and had been working up until two years ago when drug use became an issue. He said his client slipped into a heroin addiction two months ago. She wanted to get treatment and was trying to get into a drug treatment facility, he added, saying “Drugs have overtaken her at this point.”
Maxwell requested $1,000 bail and strict conditions for his client.
Judge Meg Shaw noted Aitchison’s propensity for failing to follow through on her bail conditions, also noting Aitchison had promised to get treatment in the past but failed to take any steps to follow through.
She ordered Aitchison’s further detention pending her next court appearance Jan. 27.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016