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Judge bans Ontario man from P.E.I. after string of crimes

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. —

A man from Kitchener, Ont., who moved to P.E.I. to deal with his drug addiction, will be banned from the province for two years after committing a string of crimes on the Island.

Brian Mark Clarke, 36, appeared before Judge John Douglas in provincial court in Charlottetown Tuesday for sentencing on multiple charges, including several thefts, driving while disqualified and failing to stop for police.

Judge John Douglas
Judge John Douglas

Douglas sentenced Clarke to 90 days in jail and gave him two years of probation, which included a condition he stay away from P.E.I. during that time.

Clarke’s offences included stealing $224 worth of razors from a pharmacy, pumping $64.93 in gas he didn’t pay for and taking about $220 in items at a Superstore where security stopped him.

He later went to Canadian Tire where he stole a set of keys, used them find the vehicle they belonged to and drove off.

Clarke was under driving prohibitions from previous offences at the time.

In January, Clarke stole a cellphone from a vehicle at a gas station and drove away.

Crown attorney Jeff MacDonald said the police tried to pull Clarke over, but he refused to stop, drove around several vehicles and ran a red light at a high speed.

When the police were able to identify Clarke in the vehicle he was driving, they stopped the pursuit.

The police arrested Clarke three days later.

'I came here for a better life' 

Before hearing his sentence, Clarke addressed the court and said he wanted to apologize for the disruption he caused the community, his victims and the police.

“I came here for a better life,” Clarke said.

Clarke told the court he ran away from fentanyl in Kitchener.

“I didn’t know what it was, but before I knew it, I was using it,” he said.

The court heard Clarke’s plan had been to move to P.E.I. to deal with his addiction, but he said he wasn’t prepared when he got to the Island.

With the 90-day sentence, Douglas followed a joint recommendation from the defence and Crown.

After giving Clarke credit for time served since his arrest, it left him with no more time on his sentence.

Clarke will also be under a two-year driving prohibition.

Twitter.com/ryanrross


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