Charlottetown judge wonders about jail alternatives for repeat offender

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Prince Edward Island provincial court

Judge John Douglas says jail expensive for James Allan Broderick on a jail, drinking, jail cycle

A man with a lengthy criminal record was back in court yet again, prompting the question, what else can be done.

James Allan Broderick, 43, of Charlottetown appeared in provincial court last Thursday before judge John Douglas. Broderick was sentenced to 60 days in jail after pleading guilty to a charge of theft.

The court heard that Broderick has a lengthy criminal record, much of it for theft. This recent charge was for stealing from Atlantic Superstore on Feb. 13.

Douglas said that Broderick’s life requires structure but at this point, there doesn’t seem to be any.

Broderick is frequently before the court, said Douglas, gets time in jail and when he gets out starts drinking, gets in trouble, then goes back to jail again.

Jail is an expensive option, said Douglas, and asked the probation services department to look into other possible options for Broderick.

Douglas adjourned sentence on two other charges of failing to appear in court until June 11.

Geographic location: Charlottetown

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Recent comments

  • Shawn King
    May 14, 2014 - 22:37

    I can see that you're all afraid to use your real names. As a lawyer who works with these people day in and day out, jail only works for the first few times. Once they get comfortable with it, it is not a deterrent. Then you are only left to try to deal with the root problem, alcoholism. Jail doesn't fix that. Counselling does. And that is usually done through a lengthy term of probation. A short stint of counselling in jail won't cover it. Would you rather the crimes stop, or would you rather he be punished more severely and keep offending anyway? Think about it. Stop the cycle or take your pound of flesh. You don't get both.

  • reality
    May 13, 2014 - 17:40

    IT IS WORKING - IT PROTECTS THE PUBLIC FROM HIM !!! that is every bit important as his degree of recidivism

  • Angus
    May 13, 2014 - 09:34

    Another activist judge who thinks he knows best, rather than the people who are elected to write the law. Enforce it sir! Never mind the nanny state hug-a-thug philosophy of the progressive movement. Do your job, if you want to write laws, run for office!

    • Another
      May 13, 2014 - 12:33

      Another Yankee wanna be spewing right wing republican talking points.

    • Angus
      May 13, 2014 - 16:49

      @ Another funny thing, people like you and this judge never say or write anything about the victims of the crimes, just worry how you can enable the thugs!

    • Another
      May 13, 2014 - 18:30

      People like you are the problem little angus. Too ignorant to figure out that the system is not working but like the mentally insane just keep doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. People like YOU are the ones who don't give a damn about the victims because you don't have the guts to do something about it other than just keep putting people behind bars.

  • J
    May 13, 2014 - 06:04

    P.E.I. needs a Judge Judy.

  • Jim
    May 13, 2014 - 05:24

    He is an actual islander. Maybe he could replace Mike Duffy in the Senate. He has shown at least to the court he has the qualifications.

  • Justin
    May 12, 2014 - 23:16

    Start prison gang to do work around the city and province. Nothing like some public humiliation to maybe smarten some people up. Out there in the sun in orange coveralls marked as prisoner and chained together. Bet the number of repeat offenders would drop.

  • don
    May 12, 2014 - 21:49

    why not put him to work cutting grass,working sorting garbage etc. you will find him in court less as in jail he can rest.

  • pattycakes
    May 12, 2014 - 21:34

    This is just another example of a lack of services for people with addictions and mental health issues. No one knows what to do and this person slides through the cracks, over and over..

    • you're powerless over the addict
      May 13, 2014 - 07:34

      You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.. The addict has to want the help. You can't force it on them. This guy doesn't want to quit... sad but true.

    May 12, 2014 - 21:05

    Am I reading this right? The judge is looking for an alternative to putting repeat offenders in jail because it is expensive. Only on PEI would there be a judge who thinks that repeat offenders should not go to jail. I have heard it all now. Turn in your robes and start a half way house at your home for repeat offenders,. At least the rest of the public might be safe from them. We need a system that increases the amount of jail time with each offence, not a system that leaves them on the streets to keep committing crimes.

    • Typical
      May 13, 2014 - 11:32

      Typical small minded PEI way of thinking. The knuckle draggers are out in full force on this story. What part of JAIL NOT WORKING are you people unable to comprehend? It is time to look for alternatives. Not likely to happen here though with the low information crowd that pollutes this Island.

    • Correctional worker
      May 13, 2014 - 12:23

      The problem is not just the cost of incarceration, it is the lack of services for those who are incarcerated. If you have someone in the hospital and don't treat the illness, he will be released and return becuase he is still sick, keeping him in hospital longer will not help. If you don't treat the problem that brings someone back to jail time and again, just housing him will not work. The community might feel safe while he is in jail, but has to face the fact that when he gets out again, it will all start over. The judge simply wants to find an alternative that will more effectively address the issues that this person has rather than just parking him somewhere temporarily. Right now we are just using the same solution but expecting a different outcome.

  • SlyFox
    May 12, 2014 - 20:47

    Pass the buck and give them federal time.

  • intobed
    May 12, 2014 - 19:17

    Why not let him stay a your place, Judge Douglas?