Kelowna man gets six years prison for armed robbery of drug dealer | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kelowna man gets six years prison for armed robbery of drug dealer

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A Kelowna man will spend the next five years in prison for violently robbing a Kelowna drug dealer.

Paul Davis Houle pleaded guilty to four offences that were committed on July 15, 2019, according to recently released sentencing decision. The offences were break and enter, robbery, intent to commit an indictable offence and using an imitation firearm to commit an offence.

About two weeks before the offence, Houle was at a gathering at the Richter Street home of Lareniel Dayrit, the main victim, according to the decision. Later in the day, Dayrit realized the keys to his unit and complex were missing.

About two weeks later, Houle and another person who isn't named entered the complex around 1 a.m. with their faces masked. They had a knife and a pistol-style pellet gun and used keys to go into the same unit where the gathering was held.

Dayrit was in a bedroom sleeping while two women were watching television.

They became aware of the intruders when they were pepper sprayed and the men demanded their phones and wallets.

The masked men got those items as well as a small safe and were gone in less than two minutes.

Dayrit refused to cooperate but police were able to track down the suspects by locating the cell phones that had been stolen. Houle was arrested at his residence along with his partner in crime.

The phones and safe were recovered as well as a sum of cash consistent with what was in the safe.

Another $1,500 turned up in the back of a cop car Houle was riding in. 

READ MORE: Man accused in violent Penticton home invasion released on bail

Justice Allan Betton heard that Houle had just got out of prison four months before the crime for serving another sentence for robbery. Houle has 29 prior convictions. And his intention – to steal from a drug dealer – was clear and deliberate.

“The danger and ramifications of that sort of conduct cannot be overstated,” Justice Betton said. “Stepping into that environment armed with real or imitation weapons invites and provokes responses. It is very fortunate that much more dire circumstance did not flow from this.”

Court also heard Houle has a one-year-old daughter and wants to be a “real father” when he’s released. He is trained as a metal worker, he was sober when he was arrested despite having issues with methamphetamines, and when he expressed remorse it seemed sincere, Betton said.

Houle was sentenced to five years in prison but has already served what the court considers 702 days in prison or roughly 23 months, leaving him with roughly 37 months to serve.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Dan Walton or call 250-488-3065 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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