Budding Picasso’s have had their careers stalled: police call it graffiti and that’s a no, no; pre-charge diversion for these lads.

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON February 17, 2012  Police have identified a trio of Burlington youths as responsible for a number of graffiti  ‘tagging’ incidents over the past month.

Beginning in the month of January, The Orchard and Millcroft communities experienced an increase in incidents of graffiti. The graffiti, in the form of spray painted ‘tags’, were popping up on park benches, Canada Post boxes, as well as cable and hydro boxes.  The majority of the ‘tags’ were one word in nature.

It isn’t public art by any stretch of the imagination. It’s kids with too much free time on their hands and parents not fully aware of what their children are doing.



In a planned response to the increased incidents of graffiti, both uniformed and plain clothed officers were utilized to patrol affected areas. This initiative included a collaborative effort with residents, school officials and students who alerted police to tagging locations, provided timelines and potential suspect information.

This resulted in the identification of three Burlington youths ages 16 and 17 years who were responsible for the vast majority of the recent tagging.  The youth, whose identities are protected under the provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act, are all entering a pre-charge diversion program operated by the Burlington Youth Bureau.

Such acts of vandalism have significant costs associated to them and police are asking parents to be mindful of youths in possession of tagging tools such as spray paint cans, graffiti art and wide-tipped markers.

Anyone with information regarding those responsible for such acts of vandalism are asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-TIPS(8477), through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637(crimes).

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Another home invasion in Burlington – police are pretty good at apprehending – are judges being stiff with the sentences?

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON  February 14, 2012.  It wasn’t hearts or roses yesterday for two residents on Dryden Avenue.

It was 2:00 am on Valentines Day when four armed people broke through the front door of a Dryden Avenue home and rounded up the two residents of the home – brothers who are both in their 20’s.  The victims were led to the basement and restrained. The suspects assaulted one of the victims and demanded drugs and money.

The house was then ransacked and the bandits began stuffing electronics and other valuables into a duffle bag. It is believed that the presence of police in the neighbourhood resulted in the suspects fleeing and leaving all the property behind, including weapons.

One victim was unharmed and the second victim was treated for minor injuries at Joseph Brant Hospital and has since been released.

Suspects are described as:

1) Male, not white, mid to late 20’s in age, darker skin possibly Latin American, 6’3″, 260-270 lbs, covered face with dark hoodie and pulled dark shirt or scarf up over lower part of face, wore dark clothing and gloves

2) Male, white, mid to late 20’s in age, described as being a “skin head” light coloured possibly blonde short hair, 5’10”, 175 lbs, jeans with a ski jacket, no other identifiable marks, scars or tattoos, did not wear gloves or a mask.

3) Male, Asian, mid to late 20’s in age, 5’9″, 150-160 lbs, wearing brown Timberland boots, grey hoodie pulled down on head, dark shirt or scarf pulled up over lower face, blue jeans, unknown type of gloves.

4) Male, possibly Italian descent, mid to late 20’s in age, 6’0″, 220 lbs, grey hoodie, white scarf or shirt pulled up over lower part of face.

What is it that takes criminals to a specific house on a specific street at 2:00 am in the morning and assaulting the occupants and demanding drugs and cash?  Because they think that’s what’s in the house?  There is some detective work being done around this robbery.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Burlington Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905 825-4747 x2315, Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-TIPS(8477), through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637 (crimes).


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The woof woofs went bow wow and suddenly there was a handful of firearms and a grow op. Nibbles and bits for that puppy.

By Pepper Parr

Thursday evening the Halton Regional Police Guns and Gangs investigators along with the Emergency Services Unit raided a high risk east end Burlington residence and uncovered a sophisticated hydroponic grow-op with a hydro bypass, marihuana as well as  a variety of prohibited weapons (flick knives and pepper spray) and a loaded .45 calibre pistol.

Cst Mitchell with police dog Juno being trained. Another police dog, Storm, was used in the drug raid in east end Burlington.

Police Services Dog, STORM, a general patrol dog who is also trained in the detection of firearms, was instrumental in the discovery of the pistol.  The .45 calibre pistol was loaded.  A gun of this size is very, very powerful and a Kevlar vest is not going to be much help.  In addition to the .45 calibre pistol, investigators seized 22 other firearms from the residence.

This residence was clearly a very dangerous place that undercover police have probably been watching for some time.

The Halton Regional Police successfully dismantled a residential grow home and recovered a loaded firearm with the assistance of Police Services Dog, ‘STORM’.

Burlington Hydro took part in the raid to ensure that the lights do not come back on.

ACCUSED are: Graham ALLEN, 40 of Burlington; Grace ALLEN, 36 also of Burlington.

They have been charged with:

Theft of Hydro (consumption)

Occupants Injure Building

Produce Controlled Substance

Possession of a Controlled Substance

Possession of a Restricted Firearm with Ammunition

Possession of a Prohibited Weapon (5 counts)

Knowledge of Unauthorized Possession of a Firearm

Unauthorized Possession of a Firearm

Contravention of Storage Regulations (four counts)

Careless Storage of a Firearm

The police threw every charge they could think at these two.  This investigation is going to be ongoing for some time.

I’d like to add some context to this news item..  A .45 calibre revolver blows a big hole in whatever it hits.  The damage it does is not something one recovers from easily.  Each day men and women are sent out on a raid which their commanding officers prepare them for – but there is no preparation for a bullet coming out of a .45 calibre handgun.

When most of us go to work each day we expect to come home unharmed.  The officer who took part in that raid in east end Burlington on Thursday expected to get home that night.  Fortunately the handgun was not in the hands of a criminal about to be arrested.  They were lucky.  It doesn’t always work out that way.

Investigators remind the public to utilize Crime Stoppers to report any illegal drug, gang or gun activity at 1-800-222-TIPS(8477), through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637(crimes).

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Halton police solve Burlington robbery before it gets reported; one adult male and one youth charged.

By Staff

Halton Regional Police laid robbery charges against an 18-yr-old man and a 16-yr-old youth, when suspicions the officers had, proved accurate.

On February 8, 2012, at 6:00 p.m. a group of youths were walking through the ravine area behind Alexander Public School, in Burlington, when they were confronted by two males.  The males ordered the youths to empty their pockets, physically restraining one of the youths to search him and restricted the movements of the other youths throughout the encounter.  While the one youth was being physically restrained, his glasses were broken.

The males fled after stealing two i-phones.

Police didn't know they had their man until the robbery report came in - but they had their suspicions - which proved to be true.

Subsequent to the robbery, but prior to it being reported, plain-clothed officers were in the vicinity of the school on an unrelated matter.  Officers observed the suspects on school property, had conversation with them and obtained their identities.

When the robbery was reported later and descriptions of the suspects given out, the officers who were in the area “on an unrelated matter” knew who the bandits were and where they lived. The police arrested the two without incident.

ACCUSED:  Akenson TELESFORD, 18 yrs, of Oakville.  CHARGES:  Forcible Confinement (four counts), Robbery (two counts), Breach of Recognizance.

ACCUSED:  16-year-old male from Burlington (whose identity is protected under the provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act).  CHARGES:  Forcible Confinement (four counts), Robbery (two counts).

The question that isn’t answered is: What was the unrelated matter that had the plain clothes officers in the ravine in the first place.  Something’s up.



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Two geniuses use hand gun in a Lakeshore Road convenience store robbery.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON  February 7, 2012  – Perfectly innocent people are victimized by crime and when that criminal is a gun toting youth sticking a gun in your face and ordering you to get down on the floor – becoming a victim takes on a whole new meaning.  Few people ever recover from an armed robbery.  The trauma is with them for the rest of their lives.

Last Sunday at around 7:00 a.m., two men, one armed with a handgun, entered the Real Convenience Mart, located at 5353 Lakeshore Rd., Burlington.

The firearm was pointed directly at the store clerk, death threats were made and the clerk was ordered to the ground.

The men stole the cash content of the till and the ATM located inside the store – not sure how they managed to do that but that is what the police reported.

The suspects also took several cartons of cigarettes and lottery tickets, which were all stuffed into a duffel bag.  The clue that these two were not in the genius category is in the theft of lottery tickets.  True justice would have them stealing a ticket worth a couple of million – but these idiots wouldn’t be able to collect on it because the lottery people know where every ticket is sold – cash a winning ticket and they’ve got you.

These two geniuses were described by police as follows:

Suspect # 1

Description:  male, white, 20-25 years of age, 5’9 to 6’0 tall, approximately 175 – 180 lbs, average build, short dirty blonde hair with receding hairline, fair complexion.

Clothing: Dark coloured jacket with “New York” on the back with a possible Yankees patch on the front. White hoodie underneath the jacket, dark jeans, and white runners.

 Suspect # 2

Description: male, white, 20-25 years of age, 5’6 to 5’7 tall, approximately 140 – 150 lbs, slim build, with dark hair, fair complexion. Lettered tattoos on his right forearm.

Clothing: Dark coloured jacket, dark jeans, white runners.

They are believed to have fled the scene in a newer model sedan, possibly a Toyota Corolla or Camry.

Anyone with information that would assist in this investigation is asked to contact the Burlington Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905 825-4747 x2315, Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-TIPS(8477), through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637(crimes).

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Halton police detectives lead investigation and arrests of a gang of ATM skimmers, recover $30,000 cash.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON  February 3, 2012  –  The chiefs all looked a little wooden but it was a great day for the two Halton Regional Police Service detectives who told how, working from a tip, they managed to break wide open a significant gang of organized criminals who were scamming automated banking machines and tucking hundreds of thousands of dollars into their own pockets.

There were representatives from the OPP, Durham, Halton, Toronto and the Canadian Bankers Association - all basking in the glow of some fine police work done by two Detectives

Det.-Constable Dwayne Perron and Det.-Sgt Brad Murray handled most of the questions during the press conference and they clearly had a firm grip on what was done and how it was done.  Cases like this could be career makers for these two officers.   They were the lead players in what was described as one of the larger press conferences the Halton Police have held.

The police displayed a table of currency they had seized when they raided a number of locations including a credit card lab and arrested twelve people who were part of a gang that stole at least $300,000, stolen from customers and banks in Halton and across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). Police also seized what they called an impressive collection of electronic devices that were part of a credit card duplication lab set up by the criminals

Halton Detectives Murray and Perron explaining to the media how the ATM skimming operation worked and some details on the investigation they carried out that arrested twelve people.

During a Friday morning press conference at the Oak Walk Drive police station, police displayed around $40,000 seized during the operation and dozens of pieces of equipment, which they said was used to capture and record people’s banking information.

The investigation became active when a financial institution investigator alerted them to the skimming in October 2011.  Police had reason to believe the gang had been operating since about April 2010.

Besides the two detectives who ran the investigation there were representatives from Durham Regional Police, Ontario Provincial Police, Toronto Police, York Regional Police, and the Provincial Asset Forfeiture Unit who were all part of the investigation and collectively executed eight Criminal Code search warrants on residences in Markham, Vaughan and Toronto.

Along with the $40,000 cash police found what they described as a credit card printing lab, instruments used to forge credit cards and numerous fraudulent credit cards.  Three vehicles were also seized.

Halton Police Chief Gary Crowell said: “This particular fraud involved the suspect’s installing illegal skimming devices and hidden video cameras on bank machines and gas station credit card readers, conducting counter surveillance to ensure the devices were not discovered by the public or the police and subsequently removing these devices,”

Police recovered camera equipment, false fronts used on legitimate ATM machines along with small electronic boards that aided in the capture of data. Also seized were a collection of blank bank cards.

“Once the devices were removed by the suspects, the stolen data was then downloaded and compared to hidden camera surveillance that they had obtained, thereby revealing the PINs of the victims’ bank or credit cards. The downloaded data and the PINs were then encoded onto a variety of fraudulent cards.”

Crowell explained that with this information the suspects would then either withdraw money directly from the victims’ accounts or make direct purchases with the fraudulent cards.  During the investigation some of the suspects were caught on surveillance tapes when they installed the devices.

Police estimate the suspects compromised 280 bank machines and around 10 gas station credit card readers across the GTA.  Det.-Constable Dwayne Perron said 35 incidents of this fraud took place in Halton, where only ATMs were targeted.  Police believe the suspects involved in these incidents are part of two separate criminal organizations who shared one credit card lab.

Charged with fraud over $5,000, conspiracy to commit an indictable offence, and participation in a criminal organization are: Dmitri Chalenko, 28, Dennis Glukhov, 31, Viacheslav Glukhov, 31, Vadim Glukhov, 53, Alla Glukhov, 53, and Matvey Tchirkov, 29, all of Vaughan; Makar Tchirkov, 24, Rishan Thayalachelvam, 29, and Geevan Negendran, 32, all of Markham; and Janesmathan Vilvarajah, 22, of Toronto.

Charged with fraud over $5,000, conspiracy to commit an indictable offence, participation in a criminal organization, two counts of possession of instruments for use in forging credit cards and two counts of possession of credit card data are: Viatcheslav Shevelev, 27, and Maksym Gaiderov, 22, both of Toronto.

A representative from the Canadian Bankers Association told the press that this kind of skimming ATM`s was on the decline nationally and that the newer `chip and pin`cards were making it harder for thieves to get at the data on the cards.  He explained that banks lose more than half a billion dollars a year on this kind of theft and that banks reimburse customers whose accounts are compromised.

Halton Regional Police Chief Gary Crowell advised residents to put their hand over the keypad of the ATM machine and to stand close to the screen to avoid being skimmed by hidden cameras.

Chief Crowell recommended people use their hand and body to conceal the keypad when entering their PIN, to check ATMs to make sure card slots all look the same, be suspicious of signs directing them to use a particular ATM, review their credit card and bank account statements regularly and contact their financial institution immediately if unknown transactions or withdrawals are present.

The banks, through a co-ordinated effort with the Canadian Bankers Association are constantly surveying transaction on the Interac network and when they spot something that seems out of the ordinary they will give clients a call and ask if they completed a particular transaction.

This reporter got two calls from the bank during the period of time this investigation was taking place.  Out of the house when the calls came in I was surprised to hear the answering machine tell me that the amount available to me for withdrawal had been reduced to $1.00 and would I call the bank immediately.  I live off that bank card – so I called quickly and was instructed to go to the nearest branch of my bank with my bank card, that was now no longer valid, and have two pieces of photo identification.  Arrived at the bank – they took the old card issued me a new card and said my withdrawal level was back where it has been.

What if that call had come in on a weekend?  I know which gas station I used that card at and I`ll be watching.



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Lifestyle change awaiting resident accused of drug trafficking. He`s going to have time to “contemplate”.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON  February 4, 2012  – Jeremy Isard is looking at some new experiences and may be the first person in Burlington to get to know, in a very up close and personal way, the new plans the federal government has for criminals.

You see, Isard got caught with some cocaine in his pocket, not just once – he got caught a couple of times and now they’ve got him in a police cell awaiting a bail hearing.  The Halton Regional Police used one of their undercover officers to meet up with Isard and buy some of that snorting stuff.  Isard must have thought he had a great customer in the making and that maybe that customer had some friends – nothing better than a satisfied customer base to keep the cash rolling in.

Bricks of cocaine - this stuff is produced by the ton. It is BIG business controlled in large measure by organized criminals.

Isard came to the attention of police  in March of last year and began to pay him more attention than he really wanted because they were pretty sure they had a drug trafficker in their sights – the sentence for drug trafficking is seven years in prison – and sentences like that bring great joy to police officers.

More importantly for Jeremy Isard is the change in the rules that determine parole eligibility – by the time Isard’s trial is over his eligibility for parole will be quite a bit different.  The cost of doing business has gone up for Isard and for those who buy the cocaine he  sells are going to have to look for a new supplier – because you know that the undercover police officer was not his only customer.  All the drug transactions took place in the City of Burlington.

Drug dealers can use an iPhone app to weigh the cocaine they are selling you. These guys have the cash flow to buy all the tools they need.

Last Friday, the police determined they had enough evidence and arrested Isard after he sold 1.75 grams of cocaine to an undercover officer.   With handcuffs firmly fitted the police searched their suspect and a residence on  Longmoor Drive in Burlington and found a quantity of cocaine, scales and packaging.  Jeremy was in business”  but his $4500.00 of operating cash was taken in as evidence, which means Isard is going to have to find money somewhere else to pay for a lawyer.  The police scooped up 72 grams of cocaine.  Clearly Isard was just a distributor, hopefully the police got a look at the food chain and can now focus on where the stuff was coming from – and while they were at it – they got a good look at where it was going.  So for those of you who buy the stuff – the police now know who you are, which means you are on a list you didn’t really want to be on.  The police call that a “person of interest”.

Isard, 29 years of age, a Burlington resident, has been charged with two counts of possession of cocaine for the   purpose of trafficking,  six counts of trafficking in cocaine.

Police remind the public that Crime Stoppers is there to report on any illegal drug, gang or gun activity 1 800 222 8477.


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Eleven very big and very expensive truck tires are not where they are supposed to be.

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON  January 26, 2012  There is someone out there who has wheels that don’t belong to them.  Thieves stole twelve Michelin X2E2 (G) low rolling resistance tires and twelve aluminum outer 5 hole rims. Total loss is valued at $11,000.

The theft took place over the weekend of December 9th, 2011.  The thieves gained entry to the fenced compound of Trans East Trailer Ltd., 3091 Appleby Line and removed tires and rims off a tri -axle trailer parked in the parking lot.

The police could use some help on this one.  Anyone with information on this or any other crime is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637 (crimes).

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Neighbours help nab thief attempting to break into a Woodland Ave home.

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON  January 25, 2012  A Woodland Avenue resident, returning to her home at 4:45 in the afternoon on January 23rd interrupted a break and enter in progress.

Two suspects had pried open a back door to gain entry into the house. When the suspects were alerted to the resident’s presence, they fled on foot through neighbouring backyards.

Police were dispatched to the area. Alert neighbours saw the fleeing suspects and managed to capture and detain one of them for police.

Police also seized a vehicle that had been left behind by the suspects, parked in the victim’s driveway.

Police are still seeking a second male suspect, described as 6’1”, olive complexion, with a tattoo on his neck and wearing a black coat at the time of the break-in. Two female suspects are also being sought that were seen exiting the suspect vehicle and fleeing on foot.

James Mann, 19 of Hamilton, is charged with Break and Enter, Obstructing Police.  He is being held pending a bail hearing.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact the Burlington Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905-825-4747 x2315, Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS(8477), through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637(crimes).

This is the second reported break in the community in as many weeks.  Hopefully Judges in Milton handling these cases will send a message to not only the criminal element via the stiff sentences they impose but to the community as well.  A statement from the bench is perhaps called for.


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Those were not neighbours making a call – imagine what could have gone wrong had the criminals gotten into the house

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON January 17, 2012  It was a cold Canadian winter night with everyone in a home on Cherry Hill Crescent snuggled under their covers.  The sound of breaking glass at 3:30 am was not expected – and brought the residents of the house to their feet.

The police canine unit was brought in to track down suspects that had begun to break into a Cherry Cr home.

Suspects had attempted to enter the home by smashing a rear sliding glass door, but were scared off by the occupants who witnessed two males running from the area.

Police conducted an extensive search of the area, including the use of a canine unit, but were unable to locate those responsible.

Tips related to Home and Business security can be found at www.haltonpolice.ca under the ‘Community Policing’ tab.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact the Burlington Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905 825-4747 x2315, Crime Stoppers at 1 800 22-TIPS(8477), through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637(crimes).


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The reindeer that left Spencer Smith Park didn’t go back to the North Pole. They were stolen.

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON  January 16, 2012  There is a group of people, less than twenty, who gather in a city workshop and plan for the lighted display that appears every year during the holidays in Spencer Smith Park.   They give of their time and pick up a significant part of the costs to build and later maintain the lighted displays that are a delight for the rest of us to enjoy each year.

Somewhere in the city there are a couple of punks who thought it was a huge lark to slip into the park at night and dismantle the display of a small herd of deer.

The replacement value for the six foot, steel framed, lighted display, hand made by the Festival of Lights Committee that have been doing this for more than 15 years, is approximately $2,500.

In a basement or perhaps a garage somewhere – the punks that stole the display are chuckling away.  They are not likely to grow into the kind of young men that grow up to volunteer in their community.

Lynne Snider is one of some 20 volunteers who create, build and then install the displays that dot Spender Smith Park during the annual Festival of Lights.

They might want to think about helping put up the 12,000 feet of tube lighting that is used for the Festival that lasts 40 days and pulls an average of 600 people into Spencer Smith Park during the event.

The official opening of the Festival of Lights features a march in by the Burlington Teen Tour Band who, would you believe this, devour more than 960 pieces of pizza  during the chow down they get after the opening.

The loss of this particular display is disheartening and disappointing for the Festival Committee who in 2012 face some significant financial hurdles.  The Burlington Downtown Business Association has decided they are not able to continue funding the Festival with their $5000. Contribution.  The BDBA found that the traffic to Spencer Smith Park just didn’t work its way up Brant Street.

Oddly enough, the city isn’t involved in this significant event.  It doesn’t have a staff member on the Festival Committee.  Michele Allan, chair of the Festival Committee is confident that a new source of funding will come through for them.  If you’ve any funding ideas – pop a note along to her at: burlingtonfol@yahoo.ca

Anyone with information on this or any other crime is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637 (crimes).

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More people in Burlington get scooped in RIDE program than anywhere else in the Region.

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON  January 10, 2012  –  Halton Regional Police released statistics on the number of people caught in the net they put out during the holiday season to apprehend those stupid enough to think they can drink and drive.  If you’re were one of the people who got the card with an illustration – hope you said thanks to the police officer and then remembered to ensure your kids got the message – you can’t drink and drive.

Nelson High School students got that lesson when police spent part of a day at the school showing the students just how unable they are to walk a straight line if they had been drinking and getting a look at the equipment the police use to measure the blood alcohol content in their bodies.  It was police time well spent.

The driving under the influence of alcohol legislation has been around for 90 years – since 1921, but we still have far too many traffic deaths, that were the result of a driver being drunk.  There was a time when friends at a party would say to a guest as they were about to leave – “Have one for the road”.  We actually did that.

A total of 84 RIDE check points were set up by Regional Police; 67 driving under the influence charges were laid. Burlington's record was the worst in the Region.

This year the police stopped 17,396 vehicles during the RIDE program.  564 of those people were asked to blow into the device that measures the amount of alcohol in the blood; 87 people were given warnings while 23 failed the test.  Failing the test means you get to call home and ask for help or call your lawyer.  If you are just warned you face anything from a three day driving suspension up to a 30 day driving suspension if you are caught a third time.  Should the police officer that stops you decide to take you into the police station for a test on a much more sophisticated piece of equipment or if you refuse to take the breathing test – you lose your license automatically for 90 days. One would hope that at that point your insurance company made it so expensive to get coverage, that you wouldn’t be able to afford to drive.

Sgt. Dave Cross, media guru for the Halton Regional Police, wasn’t able to say if the number of warnings and charges has dropped over the years, but he does point out that the RIDE program serves a very useful purpose.  You can almost hear him shaking his head, when he talks about the number of people who actually get caught behind the wheel of a vehicle,  knowing they have been drinking.   Couple of things were evident from the data he released though.  While Burlington may be the #2 best Canadian city to live in, it had the worst results in terms of the number of people warned or charged by the police.

There were a total of 84 different RIDE check points set up, 31 each in Burlington and Oakville.

While the prime purpose of the RIDE program is to catch people driving while drinking, it serves as a notice to the community that the police are out there.  It also gives the police a chance to scoop up other people they are looking for.  There were seven criminal charges laid for non-drinking offenses, 3 suspended drivers were caught and 178 people nabbed under the Provincial Offenses Act – most of them were from Oakville.

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Big trucks are attracting the attention of the thieving community. Load of engines get taken from fenced compound.

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON January 5, 2012  – During the Christmas holiday period suspects as yet known slipped into the fenced compound of Trans East Trailer at 3091 Appleby Line and removed the tires and rims off two double axle trailers parked in the north west portion of the parking lot.

Stolen were twelve Michelin XZE2 low rolling resistance tires and twelve aluminum outer 10 holes rims. Total loss is valued at $12,000.

Police would like any help they can get on a much bigger heist that took place between November 25th and November 28th, 2011. Thieves broke into a gated compound located at 4495 North Service Road. They then rolled out a 53 foot, white, storage trailer and its contents.  The stolen automotive parts include 10 engines, 54 engine covers and 12 bumpers. The total loss of the trailer and parts is valued at $143,000.   That will be quite an insurance claim

Police see this as professional due to the expertise required to operate and move the heavy objects.

Anyone with information on this or any other crime is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com

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Prowler in the Palmer Drive community in Burlington is also peeping – into your home.

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON  December 23, 2011  – Halton Regional Police have received reports of a prowler who is doing more than prowling along Palmer Drive near Guelph Line. The prowler’s actions suggest he was peeping into the homes.

The man is described as being in his forties 6’1, 220 lbs., wearing blue jeans, a grey sweater and grey hat.

There have been several similar incidents reported to the Halton Regional Police Service both in Burlington and Oakville dating back to early 2011. In these earlier incidents, the reports were of a suspect masturbating while looking into homes. Police believe that the same person is responsible for many of these acts.  There is no evidence that the culprit ever attempted to enter any of the residences.

The Halton Regional Police Service would like to remind residents to be vigilant in reporting any suspicious behaviour around their homes to police.   Additionally, police would like to hear from those residents who have experienced similar incidents that have previously gone unreported.  Further, police are asking that if residents encounter incidents of this nature, they DO NOT confront the culprit but immediately call 911.

Anyone with information in relation to these or any other crimes is asked to contact the Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905 825-4747 x2215 or anonymously through Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).


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Halton police chief decides to ride off into the sunset – announces his retirement to start in June, 2012

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON  December 15, 2011  – Gary Crowell, the Chief of Halton Regional Police is hanging up his pistols and will take retirement in June of 2012.  After 41 years of policing, which started with a stint with the RCMP, the chief, who has been with the Halton Regional Police Service since 1999, when he was brought in as Deputy Chief, is bringing a police career to an end.

Crowell was promoted to Chief in 2006.   Prior to coming to Halton, he served with the Peel Regional Police Service.

Police Services Board Chairman Bob Maich and other members of the Board commended and thanked Chief Crowell for his dedication to the Service, and to the community. “The Board is proud of the Chief’s many accomplishments attained over the years. Through the leadership, integrity and decisiveness of Chief Crowell, the Police Service team, the Region of Halton, and all community members have benefited from his contributions”, said Bob Maich. “The Board looks forward to his continued leadership through this transition period.”

Chief Gary Crowell has announced his retirement for June of 2012. Police Services Board gears up to find a replacement.

Chief Crowell thanked the Board for their incredible support and guidance during his six years as Chief. He also thanked the members of the Service for their dedication and commitment in making the Halton Police Service a very effective and professional organization. “With the excellence of the Service team and many volunteers, our community partners and Halton citizens, I am proud that Halton has been able to maintain its recognition as the safest Regional Municipality in Canada”, remarked Crowell. “I will continue my commitment to the Service through to June, 2012.”

Throughout his career, Crowell has been committed to the betterment of the Service and the community. He is a member of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP) Crime Prevention Committee, the National Child and Youth Protection Advisory Committee and the Halton Poverty Roundtable. He served on the Joseph Brant Hospital Board of Governors for nine years. He is also the recipient of the Police Exemplary Service Medal, the Order of Merit, the Gold Medal for Excellence by the Human Rights and Race Relations Centre, and the Ontario Women in Law Enforcement’s first President’s Award.

Officer Wendy Moraghan is one of the group of women in the Halton Regional Police Service that Chief Crowell wanted to see in the service as it expanded. Here she works on some equipment with a techie as they prepare for a community presentation.

Crowell was responsible for some significant changes in the number of female police in the Halton service.

The Board will meet early in the New Year to consider the process it will undertake to appoint a new Chief.  The Halton Regional Police Services Board is a seven-member civilian Board that governs the Halton Regional Police. Under the Police Services Act, the Board is responsible for the provision of adequate and effective police services to the citizens of Halton Region. The Halton Regional Police Service has an authorized strength of 925 staff, a net budget of $122.2 million.

The Police Services Board is going through a budget for 2012 that looks as if it will require a tax increase of 3.2%

Among the people that will certainly be in line for the top job is Deputy Chief Bob Percy who is currently as Deputy Chief Operations responsible for all front line and investigative policing. Halton Regional Police Service Operations under his command include:  District Policing, Emergency Services, Intelligence Bureau and Regional Investigative Services.  This task set is the guts of policing – the reason we have men and women in police cars with guns on their hips.

Prior to his promotion to Deputy Chief in May 2008, Deputy Chief Percy served in a wide variety of uniform patrol duties, including as a Coach Officer, Tactical Rescue Unit officer, patrol supervisor, and District Superintendent.

Deputy Chief Bob Percy has handled some tricky situations in Burlington while he did his best to bring competitive cycling to the Region. He currently runs the Operations side of the Regional Police Service.

Percy worked closely with the city of Burlington while they tried to work out a series of problems related to the potential for competitive level cycling that would be part of the selection of members of the Canadian Olympic Team.  The problems proved to be insurmountable in large measure to the cost of police services to handle traffic control.

A couple of months later Chief Crowell appeared before Burlington city council to tell them that Burlington was doing OK from a policing point of view.  The city had not seen the chief for some time.  During that visit Superintendent Joe Taylor took part in the reporting event.  That was another first for some time.  Supt. Taylor proved to be a man with a sense of responsibility laced with a bit of a sense of humour.  That wasn’t a personality trait evident in most senior police officers.

Police Services tend to look within when there are changes in the top levels.  They tend to look for people who are thoroughly familiar with the community and know everyone in the chain of command.

Another candidate that will get a very close look for promotion is Deputy Chief Andrew Fletcher who began his policing career with the Halton Regional Police Service as a Cadet in 1984. He oversees Community Policing Administration as the Deputy Chief responsible for Community Policing Support, Human Resources, Training, Communications Bureau, Information Services, Courts Services, Records, and Administrative Support Services.

Deputy Chief Fletcher currently runs the Administrative side of the Halton Regional Police Service.

Deputy Chief Fletcher is a strong advocate for community policing and public safety. He is dedicated to building relationships with the community through a number of proactive policing and crime prevention initiatives.

Deputy Chief Fletcher also represents the HRPS on a number of provincial policing committees and liaises with the Governments of Ontario and Canada, and other police and emergency service agencies to ensure Halton remains as safe tomorrow as it is today.

In his spare time, Deputy Chief Fletcher enjoys spending time with his family and is actively involved in the community, including spending most of his spare time on local soccer fields as a coach with the Burlington Youth Soccer Club.

Halton Regional Police Service Community Policing Administration functions under his command include: Community Policing , Human Resources, Training Bureau, Communications Bureau, Information Services, Court Services, Records and Administrative Support Services

Deputies Fletcher and Percy came to the Halton Regional Police service at the same time in 1984.    Has there been some rivalry between these two men ever since they came out of the police academy and put on uniforms with the same shoulder patch?

Whoever the new police chief is – that person will face a community that is seeing criminals from Toronto and Hamilton slip into Burlington where they sense the pickings are a little easier.  There was an LCBO break in during the early hours that required more than twenty minutes for a patrol car to arrive on the scene.  Maybe some tightening up within the ranks on the street is needed.

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Thief looking for cash – leaves fish and chip shop empty handed – gets his picture taken.

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON  December 15, 2011  Here’s a criminal who might have thought he had an easy score but after some  effort he had to leave the scene of his crime empty handed – but he did get his picture taken.  If you know this bandit call Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637 (crimes)

If you know this thug - call Crime Stoppers.

This all started just after 2:40 a.m. on December 5th, when a male suspect pried open the back door of Thistle Fish and Chips located at 3455 Fairview Street. Once inside, the suspect pried open a locked cash register and a desk drawer to search for cash. The suspect eventually left empty handed.

The suspect was captured on surveillance video and is described as a male, white, 5’7” tall, heavy build, short brown hair, and wore eyeglasses. He was wearing a green undershirt with a beige hooded sweatshirt, a blue jean jacket, black pants and black running shoes with a white emblem.

Assuming the police catch this one, the picture they take – the mug shot – will be a lot clearer.


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Handgun thefts and home break ins have Regional police busy.

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON  December 8, 2011 It was just after 1:00 am when three masked men burst through the front door of a Faversham Avenue home and stormed the bed room of one of  the residents demanding money and drugs.  The resident said there were no dugs in the house and the thieves left.  There were three other residents in the home at the time.

The suspects are described as follows:

White, 5’4” – 5’5,” 120 lbs, wearing all black clothing and white running shoes.

White, 6’4,” thin build, dressed in black.

Black, 6’3” – 6”4,” 150 – 160 lbs

The police would like to find these three. Anyone with information on this or any other crime is asked to contact the Burlington Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905 825-4747 x2315, Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-TIPS(8477), through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting ‘Tip201’ with your message to 274637(crimes).

Firearms theft has police worried:

Dangerous weapons stolen from Burlington home. Ammunition was left behind.

The Halton Regional Police Service is investigating the theft of several firearms after thieve(s) broke into a home in the area of Sherwood Forest Park, Burlington.  The break-in occurred on December 5th between 6:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. The front door had been forced open. The suspects stole five firearms, all of which were properly licensed and stored by the owner.

Missing are:

• Beretta, 92FS – 9 mm semi-automatic handgun

• Beretta, 90 TWO – 9 mm semi-automatic handgun

• SIG Sauer, SP2022 – 40 Calibre, semi-automatic handgun

• CZ75 – 9 mm semi-automatic handgun

• Bushmaster, XM15E2S, .223 Remington Shot – semi-automatic rifle

Ammunition for the weapons wasn’t taken.  The weapons were in the premises under a licence and are reported to have been properly stored.

Anyone with information on this or any other crime is asked to call the Burlington Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905 825-4747 x2315, Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-TIPS(8477), through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.com or by texting ‘TIP201’ with your message to 274637(crimes).


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A quick quiz and a $1 off coupon for a burger purchase; part of the Halton police high school RIDE program.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON  December 7, 2011 – Nelson High School students got a chance to learn just what happens when there is more alcohol in your system than the legal limit and a police officer asks you to walk a straight line.

Part of the training session included a quick quiz that was set out in a different news story that you can find at: https://www.burlingtongazette.ca/?p=5920

Two Nelson high school students do their best to stay on the green line wearing Fatal Vision goggles during a Halton Regional Police RIDE program.

Here are the answers to the ten questions the students were asked:

Question 1      False

Question 2      False

Question 3      True

Question 4      False

Question 5      False

Question 6      False – A G1 has to have a qualified driver with them – and being drunk means you’re not qualified – bit tricky that one.

Question 7      False

Question 8      False

Question 9      False – the licence is suspended for a period of 90 days

Question 10    True – but if you’re drinking and driving and the police have the evidence – there isn’t a lot your lawyer can do for you.

The students will have had problems with some of those questions – the media officer we went to for the answers had to look up the answer on more than one occasion.

Male students at Nelson High had just as much difficulty as female students trying to stay on the green line while wearing Fatal Vision goggles.

They also got a very up close experience with a breathalyzer and came away with a firm understanding of what the police do if they pull you over and ask you to blow.  And in the quick quiz the students did later in the training session they got to learn what they knew and didn’t know about the rules in place to control driving if you’ve been drinking.

It was a bit of fun and they got to laugh at their friends while they tried to walk the green line set out on the gymnasium floor.  None of them could stay on the line and most were nowhere near the line.

The day was part of the Regional Police RIDE program that had police officers at several regional high schools as well as being out on the streets with their cruisers pulling drivers over to politely ask if the driver had been drinking.  If there was any concern on the part of the police officer – the driver would be asked to breathe into a breathalyzer and perhaps try to walk a straight line.  Failure to do either of the requests and they are placed in a cruiser and taken to a police station.

The vast majority of people have not been drinking, although this year on the first day of the program in Burlington, three people were charged with driving while under the influence of alcohol.

For those that are clear the police hand out a small card, created by grade four and five students in regional schools.  The card does drive the message home.

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High school students get to see what happens when driving while under the influence of alcohol. Wasn’t pretty.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, on  December 7, 2011  – Nelson High School students – all 1500 of them were in the hands of the Halton Regional Police for a good part of Tuesday morning.  They were being taken through some “experiential training” on what happens to a person when their drinking has gone over the legal limit.

The experience was a bit of a shock to many of them.

This is the one thing you do not want to see should you be pulled over by the police. The smile on Cst. Mike Korda is nice enough - but that little grey box is not good news. If you don't drink and drive Korda will be your buddy.

Halton Regional Police have been attending at Halton high schools and showing students what breathing into the breathalyzer was all about; what happens to their bodies when they have consumed alcohol and are asked by a police officer to step out of the car and attempt to walk in a straight line and then to write a short quiz on what the rules are when it comes to drinking and driving.

Many of the parents of these students can remember a day when it was very common to say to a guest at a house party to “have one for the road” which meant you threw back a drink, thumped your chest and got behind the wheel.

Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) brought a very painful and realistic look to what happens when people drink and drive and as a result of their efforts we see programs like the one at Nelson High School.

HRPS Cst. Mark Vegso holds the "Fatal Vision" goggles students at Nelson High experimented with earlier this week. It was a strong lesson.

Each year the Halton Regional Police roll out their RIDE program – this year HRPS arrested three people for drunk driving on the first day of the program.  Seems like we have some distance to go yet before we rid ourselves of this menace.

The police take their rotating RIDE crews around the Region and stop traffic, ask drivers if they have been drinking, and if they suspect any use of alcohol they invite the driver to breathe into the little grey box and see if they can walk a straight line.

If the driver can’t – their car is impounded and they get taken to the police station.

Cst. Mark Vegso is one of the Regional police officers who is assigned to a high school, in his case it is a school in Oakville, where he handles small discipline situations, trespass problems and is in the school regularly to keep an eye on things and to also serve as a contact for students who want to talk to a police officer but don’t want to go to a police station.  Cst. Vegso also teach some law classes in the school.

Failure to provide a breath sample is also a criminal offence.  The police officers doing the training make the experience very, very realistic – there is little doubt in the mind of the student just what they are being asked to do and why.  Many of the students must have walked away from the breathalyzer table shuddering with the thought if they are ever asked to blow into the little grey box – they are in serious trouble.  The objective is that hopefully they will look for a lift before getting behind a wheel if they’ve been drinking.

The goggles used to experience what it is like to be asked to walk a straight line with alcohol in your body.  The goggles, which are made in Mexico and referred to as “Fatal Vision” goggles cost $1000. each.  But they do the job.

Staying on that green light with goggles that simulated an alcohol level over 70 was not quite as easy as this young lady thought it was going to be.

The students found that they could not walk a straight line – more frightening to all of them was that they couldn’t really see the line – it was just a blur and kept moving out of their field of vision.  The goggles used to simulate a situation where the user was slightly under the legal limit resulted in a scary experience.  The goggles used to simulate situations where the user was well over the limit – like 2.0 and up – made it very clear that driving with that much alcohol in you would result in your death or that of someone else you ran into.  And there was no doubt – you could not operate a car effectively or safely with that much alcohol in your system.  It was a pretty blunt message.

One wonders what these students said to each other as they gathered in the cafeteria for lunch with their lap tops open in front of them.  The Regional police  wondered and at the end of the training sessions – they left hoping they’d done the job.

Part of the training session included a quick quiz on drinking and driving.  Test results and more on the RIDE program are at: https://www.burlingtongazette.ca/?p=5937


1: The legal limit of alcohol to be present in your blood while behind the wheel of a motor vehicle is 100.  T/F

2: The legal limit for a G1 or G2 driver is 50.  T/F

3: A person can be charged with impaired driving after smoking marijuana.  T/F

4: It is acceptable for open alcohol to be inside your car. T/F

5: It is not a criminal offence to be intoxicated in the driver’s seat.. T/F

Friends look on a Nelson High student tries to keep his feet on the green line while using "driving under the influence of alcohol testing goggles".

6: G drivers who are accompanying G! drivers can be intoxicated while in the passenger seat. T/F

7: A person charged with Over 80 must always be charged with Impaired Driving. T/F

8: A person can refuse to provide a legally demanded breath sample and not be charged for refusing to provide a breath sample. T/F

Nelson High students write the ten question quick quiz. How would you have done with the test? Try it.

9: Upon being charged with Refusal or Over 80, a person’s driver’s licence shall be suspended for a period of 30 days. T/F

10: A police officer shall read you your rights to counsel upon arrest for Over 80. T/F


Being charged with any kind of a drinking related offence and found guilty will impact your driver’s licence – which is nothing compared to what it is going to do to your insurance rate.  While you may be allowed eventually to drive again – you may not be able to afford to – and if the car you were driving belonged to your  parents – they are not going to be very sympathetic.

Drinking is not a crime – just do so responsibly.


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Police record third traffic fatality in the Region for 2011

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON  December 5, 2011  Burlington recorded its third traffic fatality for 2011 when Henry John Grasso of Brantford, Ontario was pronounced dead at the Joseph Brant Memorial Hospital after being taken their by Emergency Measures Services after being struck by an automobile at the intersection of Appleby Line at Harrison Court, just north of Dundas Street.

An initial investigation has revealed that the pedestrian, a 51 year old Brantford man, was walking eastbound in the north crosswalk when he was struck by a northbound Nissan Maxima.  The operator of the Nissan, a 25yr old Burlington man and his passenger, a 22 year old Oakville woman were not injured.  The woman however was treated at the scene for shock by paramedics.

Due to this being a fatality, members of the Collision Reconstruction Unit (CRU) were called in to take carriage of the investigation.  The intersection was closed for over 5 hours while Reconstructionists collected evidence and measured the scene.

This is the 15th traffic fatality to occur on roadways patrolled by Halton Regional Police for 2011, and the 3rd to occur in the City of Burlington.

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