Penticton lawyer calls system ‘disgraceful’

21-year-old woman did more time than the crime called for due to busy provincial court scheduling.

Penticton lawyer calls system 'disgraceful'

One lawyer called a failure of the judicial system “disgraceful” as a 21-year-old woman did more time than the crime called for due to busy provincial court scheduling.

Taryn Hannah Page pleaded guilty to one count of theft under $5,000, one count of assault with a weapon and one count of obstructing a peace officer on Dec. 7 in Penticton Provincial Court and was sentenced to time served in jail since her October arrest.

“We run into this situation once a year where someone falls through the cracks,” said Page’s defence counsel Robert Maxwell. “She just did in the system.”

Page was in custody since Oct. 21, 48 days, which equated to 72 days with enhanced credit.  Maxwell recalled telling his client over the phone “guilty or not guilty, you’re guilty because you know something, you didn’t even have to go to jail for this, had this matter been dealt with appropriately at the time.”

In February 2014 Page was caught shoplifting a pair of boots valued at $129.99. The charge was given the initial sentencing position of a fine and a conditional discharge, Maxwell said. However, Page was involved in another incident, and eventually arrested on warrants.

On July 13 Page was involved with an altercation at a residence on Penticton Avenue which resulted in multiple people, including children, getting assaulted with bear spray. Two men were fighting outside the residence when one man told Page to grab the bear spray and use it. One man was arrested as well at that time and Page told the peace officer her name was “Jazz” and did not provide identification. The peace officer eventually found her our her real name.

“Get this kid out, she shouldn’t even be in. She was detained by Judge (Meg) Shaw rightfully based on warrants. I said I want the fastest date possible, and you know what the fastest day was? Believe it or not today (Dec. 7),” Maxwell said.

“You know what I say about the system, it’s disgraceful. Someone has to sit extra in custody because we can’t make someone available,” Maxwell said. “It is what it is. I had to say my little piece as usual, but … time served.”

Page was sentenced to 12 months probation upon her release.