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Premier 'deeply disturbed' high-risk B.C. sex offender missing on eve of trial


Premier David Eby expressed dismay that a high-risk sex offender walked away from his Vancouver halfway house two days before he was slated for a new trial, CTV News has learned. 

Randall Hopley, who triggered what was then one of the biggest manhunts in B.C. history after he abducted a three-year-old Sparwood boy in his sleep in 2011, is wanted on a Canada-wide warrant after disappearing on Saturday.

“I'm certainly, as I imagine all British Columbians are, deeply disturbed,” said Eby when asked about the repeat offender. “I don't understand why there weren't sufficient safeguards put in place by the parole board on this individual to prevent this from happening.”

CTV News has obtained court records showing the 58-year-old was supposed to begin a two-day trial on Monday on two counts of breaching a supervision order, which allegedly happened in November of last year.

In January, the National Parole Board had made a recommendation to the attorney general that Hopley be charged criminally for his non-compliance after being allegedly found at a public library computer within arm’s reach of children. A report on his behaviour noted “Your release in the community has been marred by suspensions and breaches and you do not appear to understand or appreciate your risk level.”

The charges were sworn two days after the parole board’s statement on the matter and arrangements were made over the course of several months for the trial slated to begin at Vancouver Provincial Court at 9 a.m. on Monday, Nov. 6.

“Hopley has a history of sexual assault, assault and property crime convictions,” wrote Vancouver police in a bulletin announcing their search for the man. “He has committed three offences of a sexual nature against children in the past.”

They’re warning anyone who believes they’ve seen him to call 911 immediately.

Police described Hopley as 5'9" tall and 176 pounds. He has brown hair and hazel-coloured eyes, and was last seen wearing a black coat, black pants and a black hat.

The Vancouver Police Department shared a photo of 58-year-old Randall Hopley late Saturday evening, with the hope that "someone will recognize him and call 911." (VPD) Top Stories

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