Vernon fentanyl dealer's addiction and 'chaotic upbringing' fueled offences: lawyer | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Vernon fentanyl dealer's addiction and 'chaotic upbringing' fueled offences: lawyer

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A Vernon man who jumped several fences while running from police and got tasered twice before being arrested will spend a further five months behind bars for drug trafficking.

Police discovered quantities of fentanyl, methamphetamine, and crack cocaine in bulk packages, following Kody Storm Perrault's arrest in June 2019.

With all parties appearing by telephone, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the court heard that Perrault had a lengthy criminal record consisting of almost 30 convictions.

"It was addiction that fueled these offences," defence lawyer Ben Lynskey told the court.

Perrault was arrested in Vernon in June 2019 after police found him asleep behind the wheel of a stolen BMW, with a selection of knives on the floor next to his feet. Perrault was arrested after his botched attempt to flee led him to hop fences and get tasered. The 27-year-old was later convicted and sentenced to four months in jail last November but remained in custody pending the drug trafficking charges.

Police discovered 12 grams of fentanyl, nine grams of methamphetamine, and four grams of crack cocaine, along with scales and small plastic bags following his arrest.

Perrault's fingerprint also traced him to a break and enter in Lake Country in November 2018. Perrault had broken into the garage of a Lake Country property and stole $3,000 cash, a passport, and a pair of sunglasses left in a vehicle in the garage.

Lynskey told the court the tragedies in Perrault's life started when he was just 18 months old and his mother died in a car crash. Although of Cree ancestry, he was adopted by a non-aboriginal family and suffered abuse at the hands of his alcoholic adopted father.

"(Perrault) had a very fraught and chaotic upbringing," Lynskey said.

The defence lawyer said since Grade 8 he'd "bounced around on the streets," stayed with friends and had brief periods of time with his family. He'd also been diagnosed with bipolar and depression.

However, after being released from prison in 2017, he checked into a treatment centre and remained sober for over 12 months. He ultimately slipped back into drug abuse.

Lynskey said Perrault had taken a multitude of courses while in prison and was planning to return to school to become a heavy equipment operator. Once released he would live with his fiance and enroll in school.

"At some point, Mr. Perrault will be released from custody and he has good plans in place for what's that's going to look like," Judge Richard Hewson said.

Perrault apologized to the court and said he looked forward to bettering his life.

Crown prosecutor Michelle Reinhardt argued for a 24-month jail sentence, while the defence asked for 12 months. Judge Hewson sentenced Perrault to 20 months jail-time, plus a lifetime firearms ban.

With the amount of time already spent in custody, Perrault will spend another five months behind bars.

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