Here are a few unusual Canadian crime stories that caught our attention during the past year:
And a child shall lead them
York Regional Police in November arrested a 52-year-old Ontario woman after a 911 hang-up call and a callback revealed that a scared nine-year-old boy, who made the initial call, was in a car being driven by his mother, who the boy said was drinking. Police, who obtained a description of the vehicle from the boy before the mother hung up, tracked the call and arrested the mother, who was charged with impaired driving after blowing twice the legal limit.
In August, five years after the fact, a disciplinary tribunal found Toronto police Supt. David Fenton guilty on two counts of unlawful arrest and another of discreditable conduct relating to the “kettling”, mass arrests, and detention of hundreds of protesters and bystanders during that city’s G20 summit. The sentencing hearing for Fenton—who is the only senior police official to be convicted of wrongdoing after the largest peacetime mass arrests in Canadian history—was scheduled to start December 21.
The nonprofit company that runs the arena that is the home of the Edmonton Oilers fired all 38 of its parking-lot cashiers in October after allegations of widespread theft. Northlands CEO Tim Reid said that even though some innocent employees would lose their jobs, the firings were justifiable because it would have cost the company $400,000 and four months of investigation to uncover the actual thieves.
Su casa es mi casa
A 33-year-old Nova Scotia man, Christopher Hiscock, received a probation sentence in Kamloops provincial court in October after being convicted of possession of stolen property and unlawful occupation of a dwelling house. Hiscock stole a car in Nova Scotia, was caught, charged, and fined in Ontario, then stole another car and drove to B.C., where he drove by a ranch in Little Fort, liked the looks of it, and walked in while its occupants were out. There, he fed the horses and cats, shaved and showered, watched TV, and was thawing out dinner when the residents came home and discovered him.
Powder of human kindness
In January, the Correctional Service of Canada phased out fresh milk for inmates at all of the country’s federal institutions in order to save an estimated $3.1 million per year. The fresh milk was to be replaced with powdered milk.
Sheldon Karl Skulmoski, 43, faced at least four charges in October after Manitoba RCMP discovered a cellphone video posted on his Facebook page that showed him recklessly passing vehicles on a two-lane highway at speeds of up to 185 kilometres per hour.