B.C. to bring back special teams to monitor repeat criminals
The B.C. government will resurrect a prolific offender management program scrapped in 2012, following a recommendation by an expert panel that studied ways to deal with repeat offenders who commit random acts of violence.
Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth said the province will immediately act on three of the 28 recommendations made by Doug LePard, a former Vancouver police deputy chief and former chief of Transit Police, and Amanda Butler, a Simon Fraser University criminologist, who were asked to come up with strategies to reduce property crime and random stranger attacks which have plagued many urban cities, including Vancouver.
Their report, released on Wednesday, focuses on increasing mental health supports and diverting people away from the criminal justice system rather than keeping repeat offenders in jail longer which LePard and Butler said causes harm and does not reduce reoffending.
B.C. Liberal leader Kevin Falcon slammed the “so-called experts” for failing to acknowledge the “devastating impact” of increased violent crime. The report, Falcon said, “seems to be all about explaining and excusing the behaviour of people who are harming a lot of innocent folks.”