Teen's accused killer unpunished for two weeks after breach: CTV probe
Published Tuesday, September 30, 2014 6:27PM PDT
Last Updated Tuesday, September 30, 2014 6:28PM PDT
A warrant for the arrest of the high-risk convicted rapist now charged in a Surrey teen’s murder was issued more than two weeks after he failed to report to his probation office last fall, CTV News has learned.
Raymond Caissie got away with missing two probation appointments before authorities caught on and brought him into custody, according to the public record. That’s two weeks too long, according to a community activist.
“Put out an arrest warrant immediately. Within hours, why not? Especially with a high risk offender,” said Naida Robinson.
Caissie had served every day of his 22-year sentence for a multiple rape in 1991. He was deemed a high-risk to reoffend by the National Parole Board. He’s now charged in the murder of Serena Vermeersch.
At the time of his release in June 2013 authorities had warned the public about him. On July 15, 2013 an Abbotsford judge put him on probation through a section 810 order. He was required to keep the peace, regularly report to BC Corrections, avoid drugs, and avoid contact with his victims.
The RCMP have said he was under surveillance. But on Oct. 27, Caissie stole from a Surrey Winners department store, according to the court record.
Then, on Nov. 5, he failed to report to his probation officer. Nine days later on Nov. 14, he failed to report again. It was only on Nov. 20 that authorities issued a warrant for his arrest.
Caissie was given three months in custody and three years probation for the breach. He was charged in January with the theft and given 21 days in prison. He would have been back on the street in the spring.
CTV News asked the Justice Ministry why it had taken that long to issue a warrant, and whether any other measures were taken by BC Corrections staff during those two weeks.
However the ministry refused to answer any questions, saying it had to defend Caissie’s privacy.
“We can’t discuss the specifics of the individual’s Corrections case file as those are confidential and subject to privacy legislation,” wrote a ministry spokesperson.
Robinson says that answer is no help to a community living in fear. She said the area should have been warned again the moment another arrest warrant was sent out.
“We have a right to know and I don’t believe he has a right to privacy. I don’t!” she said.
Mayoral candidate Barinder Rasode is calling for a process audit.
“My view is that the accused’s privacy rights should be put second to the rights of the victim’s family and the community who is looking for answers to see how something so horrid could have happened in our community,” she said.
Justice Minister Suzanne Anton has said she is investigating the case.