Problem drivers and chronic offenders cited by cops

During 2010, police investigated 24 cases of driving while disqualified, 79 for no insurance and seven for driving while prohibited

A court-ordered driving prohibition is no guarantee someone won’t drive.Take the example cited by RCMP Insp. Lyle Gelinas about the person who had their driver’s licence suspended and then drove away from the Campbell River courthouse.“This is the exact type of entitlement behaviour we will eliminate,” he wrote in the RCMP’s fourth quarter report to city council.Police are on the lookout for prohibited drivers and they’ve also been using a new electronic tool over the past year. It’s a portable scanner that can quickly identify a licence plate, run the plate number through a database, and then, almost instantly, let the officer know if the driver is  prohibited or doesn’t have insurance.During 2010, police investigated 24 cases of driving while disqualified, 79 for no insurance and seven for driving while prohibited.On the street, the Community Response Unit has been in operation since October. According to Gelinas, they’ve been targeting prolific offenders, chronic alcoholics who cause trouble, and problem tenants.“They have also identified a few problem properties with the assistance of the Street Crime Unit. In consultation with the owners, they have been successful in the eviction of tenants,” Gelinas wrote. “Overall, the detachment had a busy quarter…”Also during the fourth quarter, the local Crime Stoppers program received 63 tips which led to seven arrests, the clearing of 38 cases and the seizure of approximately $100,000 in drugs.The Restorative Justice Program is also growing with referrals up 62 per cent since 2009. It’s a program where an offender – particularly young, first-time offenders – have to meet face-to-face with the people they’ve victimized as well as police officers, and have to make amends for their crimes.And when they do this successfully, they won’t have a criminal record and they usually do not commit further crimes. There were 70 Restorative Justice forums held in 2010.“The Restorative Justice Program dealt with offences such as theft under $5,000, mischief, fraud, assault, (drug) trafficking and possession, while using restitution, apology letters, donations, children’s charity, community volunteer hours and essays to resolve issues,” wrote Gelinas.2010 by the numbers:

  • Murder/manslaughter: 3
  • Assaults: 422
  • Sexual assaults: 46
  • Robberies: 25
  • Business break and enters: 76
  • Residential B&Es: 155
  • Other B&Es: 42
  • Vehicle thefts: 77
  • Thefts from vehicles: 257