Arresting officer of Dylan Judd testifies about night he was brought into custody - InfoNews

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Arresting officer of Dylan Judd testifies about night he was brought into custody

May 31, 2019 - 4:00 PM

KAMLOOPS — The mother of a former Kamloops prisoner who died in his cell more than four years ago wept quietly in a Kamloops courtroom as she heard about the night he was brought him into custody.

A Shuswap RCMP officer took the witness stand yesterday, May 30, to describe the night he brought Dylan Levi Judd into the Salmon Arm RCMP detachment cells in October 2014.

Judd died less than a month later at Kamloops Regional Correctional Centre after he was found with a red sweatshirt tied tightly around his neck on November 10, 2014.

His former cellmate, Nathaniel David Jessup, is charged with one count of second degree murder in his death.

Const. Patrick Pyper was doing his regular patrols when he came across an empty overturned stolen vehicle in Sicamous. Not too far from the scene, he noticed a male near an apartment building who matched the description as one of the suspects connected to the vehicle collision.

After confronting the man, Pyper says he found out he didn’t have any reason to be in the apartment building and noticed a strong smell of liquor. This man was later identified by the officer as Dylan Judd.

“He stated his name was Jason,” Pyper said. “He was intoxicated, agitated and uneasy on foot.”

Pyper says Judd was arrested for possession of property obtained by crime and unlawfully being in a dwelling or house.

After being placed in the police vehicle, the officer says he noticed concerning behaviour from Judd including witnessing the man smashing his face against the plexiglass barrier inside the police vehicle.

When he took down Judd’s information for the jailing officer he ticked the box ‘suicidal’, ‘escape’ and ‘mental’.

“I ticked those boxes to alert the jailer to keep closer monitoring on this individual,” Pyper said, adding that these observations were made after one hour of dealing with Judd on Oct. 13, 2014.

Pyper says it was more of a concern for self-harm than believing Judd was actually suicidal. The officer says if he believed Judd was in a dangerous mindset, he would have made other recommendations for him before placing him in a cell.

Approximately 14 hours later, Pyper had a second interaction with Judd after he sobered up. He described him as a polite, cooperative and “nice kid”.

“He told us his name and that he wanted to call his parents before calling a lawyer,” Pyper says. “His demeanour was totally opposite from what I experienced before, he was a sweet kid.”

During cross examination, defence lawyer Jeremy Jensen asked Pyper why he believed ticking suicide for Judd’s police intake for the jailing officer was appropriate.

Pyper says although Judd didn’t “do anything to indicate suicide,” he was concerned he might or hurt himself in his cell.

“So why did you tick suicide?” Jensen asked.

“Because there is no box for self-harm,” Pyper replied.

Jensen pointed out there was a box for ‘other’ where he could have hand-written specifically what he observed from Judd.

“You believed that self-harm amounted to suicide,” Jensen says.

Pyper says these observations were intended for the Salmon Arm RCMP cells only.

Judd died in his cell at the Kamloops Regional Correctional Centre in November 2014. 

Jessup's trial will carry on until the end of next week. A total of nine witnesses are expected to testify.

For more stories on this trial go here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Karen Edwards or call (250) 819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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