Prolific criminals in South Okanagan to get higher public profile - InfoNews

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Prolific criminals in South Okanagan to get higher public profile

Penticton RCMP detachment commander Supt. Ted De Jager is pictured in this file photo taken June 6, 2018. The detachment is formalizing a new program that will start next year where a “top ten” list of prolific offenders will be made public when charges have been laid and warrants issued.
November 28, 2018 - 3:11 PM

PENTICTON - A new police program coming to the South Okanagan should make things more uncomfortable for prolific criminal offenders.

Penticton RCMP have been dedicating resources to those most likely to offend and re-offend for some time with the Targeted Enforcement Unit, a five member squad of officers dedicated to identifying and chasing down prolific offenders. The enforcement unit has a running list of the top prolific offenders, which usually consists of between five to 10 names. As the offenders are caught, their name falls off the list and a new one is added.

RCMP Supt. Ted De Jager said the detachment is formalizing a new program that will start next year where a “top ten” list of prolific offenders will be made public when charges have been laid and warrants issued.

The detachment commander said the definition of a prolific offender is “an adult or youth offender, with an established pattern of persistent Criminal Code and/or Controlled Drugs and Substances Act offences, who is identified by current intelligence to be criminally active and assessed by police and partner agencies as medium to high risk to re-offend.”

“One of the biggest impacts from prolific offenders is property crime, specifically break and enters,” De Jager said, adding property crime stats are down almost 30 per cent, a direct result of targeting prolific offenders.

De Jager said the RCMP’s crime analyst tabulates prolific offenders, leaving the enforcement unit to chase them down. He’s quick to point out these offenders aren’t likely to be the downtown street people or those on the streets with drug issues - although it’s entirely possible a prolific offender could have drug issues.

“These people are crime drivers. We’re going after the bad guys, those with a lifestyle devoted to crime. We’re not after those causing social issues,” he said.

“Those with social based issues are not crime drivers, but they may appear intimidating or dangerous. By far the greatest crime impact in this community is achieved by targeting the very small minority of people who commit the majority of crime.”


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