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Penticton homeless man to serve a month behind bars for stealing food

January 15, 2017 - 9:30 AM

PENTICTON - A homeless man who stole from a local grocery store in order to eat will spend the next month in jail for his actions.

Penticton Judge Meg Shaw sentenced Timothy William Rickerby, 45, to a 30 days in jail today, Jan. 13, for his part in the theft of about $730 worth of mostly perishable merchandise from Penticton’s Real Canadian Superstore on May 7, 2016.

Crown prosecutor Andrew Vandersluys told court Rickerby was stopped by the store’s loss prevention officer after leaving the building with a shopping cart loaded with mostly food items. He said Rickerby, who was observed on store video loading the cart and a backpack with a female accomplice, was cooperative with police upon his arrest.

Rickerby has four prior counts of theft under $5,000, including one in May, 2013. Vandersluys said Rickerby served 30 days for that incident, asking Judge Shaw to consider a "step up" in the jail sentence to 45 days this time, along with 12 months probation.

Defence lawyer Robert Maxwell said his client’s previous indiscretions were driven by a drug habit he had since overcome. Maxwell noted most of the items stolen this time were food.

“He previously stole to support his habit, this time he stole to eat,” he said.

Maxwell noted his client is homeless and currently looking for orchard work pruning but finding the season delayed due to cold weather.

He asked the judge to consider a conditional sentence of six months to one year.

Judge Shaw said Rickerby’s theft food items weren’t “high on the list for resale” took into consideration his willingness to cooperate with authorities.

She also said given his four prior theft charges, a conditional sentence wasn’t appropriate but neither was a step up in jail time.

Rickerby was sentenced to 30 days jail, followed by a year’s probation which includes a 'no go' order at Penticton’s Real Canadian Superstore.


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