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Prolific offender caught breaking curfew

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January 30, 2013 - 12:57 PM

RCMP answered an 'unwanted person' call early this morning at the Crossroads Inn on Seymour Street to find a 20-year-old prolific offender breaching probation orders.

RCMP Staff Sgt. Grant Learned said the Kamloops man was visiting a friend before RCMP were called to the scene at about 4 a.m. this morning.

"We go and try to persuade the person to leave on their own accord," Learned said.

And if the person doesn't willingly leave they are arrested.

"We exercise discretion," he said. "Ultimately when the individual refuses to leave there's always a potential for conflict. Usually there's an aggrieved person who is not going to be happy with the direction that they've been given."

Despite the commonality for police to receive calls from a residence or business, Learned said the relevance in this case is that this man was a prolific offender breaching court orders. The order stated the man was not to be out of a designated residence between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. Management had also banned him from the Crossroads Inn prior to the incident.

But breaking the ban was not the reason for the arrest Learned said.

"It was the court imposed curfew," he said.

The prolific offender program began in Kamloops as part of a pilot program through a criminology research professor at the University of the Fraser Valley and RCMP in partnership with the courts, the Crown and probation offices.

"This is built upon the knowledge that in most communities, regardless of the size or location, there are typically about 20 per cent of the people or population who are usually responsible for about 80 per cent of the calls for service that we handle."

Those labeled as a prolific offender are checked for court order compliance by RCMP every night.

"We flag them whenever they have court conditions, typically that's curfew," Learned said.

"The level of focus and attention on prolific offenders is extremely high."

Prolific offenders are given the opportunity for guidance and counselling and the benefits are there for the individual who legitimately wants to turn their life around with assistance. 

Learned said there is a wide variety of crimes that can put someone on the prolific offender list.

"Whatever it is, these are individuals that we're coming into contact with," he said.

Learned said the program has been very successful in Kamloops and has since been adopted.

"It was beyond what they had expected," he said.

The prolific offender who broke probation this morning remains in police custody pending a court appearance and charges of failure to comply with a probation order.

— Jessica Wallace

News from © iNFOnews, 2013

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