Skip to main content

'Not good enough': Critics blast B.C.'s plan to investigate repeat offenders


On the early morning of March 1, John Dickinson was stabbed to death outside of Lucky Bar in downtown Victoria.

Mohamed Omar is the man accused of stabbing and killing the 30-year-old while out on bail for a previous alleged stabbing.

"If he had of been held in custody my brother would still be alive,” said Jasmine Bauer, the sister of Dickinson.

Charges against Omar have yet to be proven in court.

That case and many others like it are what some critics call an example of "catch and release justice."

"This is a problem in our communities," said Lisa Helps, Mayor of Victoria.

In April, the B.C. Urban Mayors' Caucus wrote to Attorney General David Eby, urging the government to take action to address offenders who are repeatedly arrested and released.

On Thursday, Eby announced that the province has retained two experts to investigate and report back on the issues brought forth to him by the mayor’s caucus, particularly around chronic offenders and random attacks.

"We've asked these business experts to report back in 120 days," said Eby.

The attorney general says if potential solutions are discovered before the report is completed, the province will look at implementing them.

The opposition house leader, Todd Stone, says municipalities were promised early this week that creative solutions were coming. He says what we got today falls very short.

"Apparently the best that the NDP can do is commission a report that will take 120 days, or four months, to be finished that they may or may not act upon," said Stone. "That is simply not good enough."

The grieving sister of Dickinson says she wants to see immediate changes. Changes that would see repeat offenders kept behind bars now, and not after a 120-day review.

"They need to start cracking down and dealing with the issues at hand," said Bauer. "Otherwise we're just going to have criminals out on the streets and it's just going to keep happening." Top Stories

Stay Connected