Death threat, weapons charges dropped for George Brake

·2 min read
67-year-old George Brake made a court appearance in Corner Brook Friday morning. He pleaded guilty to dangerous driving charges, but the Crown dropped weapons and death threat charges against him. (Colleen Connors/CBC - image credit)
67-year-old George Brake made a court appearance in Corner Brook Friday morning. He pleaded guilty to dangerous driving charges, but the Crown dropped weapons and death threat charges against him. (Colleen Connors/CBC - image credit)

George Brake sat solemnly in a small court room in Corner Brook Friday morning while prosecution declared the Crown would be dropping two counts — possession of weapons for a dangerous purpose and uttering death threats — because there was no likelihood of conviction.

Brake, 67, was arrested in January after leading police on a high-speed chase in Deer Lake. He allegedly threatened to execute politicians in the midst of a Newfoundland and Labrador general election.

Police said they seized 36 knives in his truck at the time of his arrest on Jan. 27 and later found an unlicensed shotgun and rifle that were not stored safely at Brake's home.

Brake's lawyer Gary Kearney told the court that Brake, who had previously pleaded not guilty to all six charges against him, changed his plea to guilty on the charges of dangerous driving and flight from police.

Crown attorney Trina Simms did not offer any further explanation for withdrawing the charges related to the alleged death threats and possession of knives.

Brake has been in custody, with most of his time spent at the Waterford Hospital in St. John's, since the incident took place.

He was arrested in front of the office of a political candidate in Deer Lake, where the RCMP say they found three dozen hunting and tactical knives in his truck, with one knife allegedly wedged next to the driver's seat. Police said they'd received reports that Brake said he was trying to "stop the election."

Brake puts up his thumb and waves to the media in the courtroom Friday. This is the first time he's appeared in person since he was arrested and charged in January.
Brake puts up his thumb and waves to the media in the courtroom Friday. This is the first time he's appeared in person since he was arrested and charged in January.(Colleen Connors/CBC )

Today was the first time he has appeared in person in the Corner Brook courtroom since the event in January. Most court appearances have been by teleconference.

He has another court date set for May 14 for facts and sentencing on the dangerous driving charges, and also has a trial set for that date related to his two firearms charges.

Before leaving the courtroom Friday, he flashed a peace sign to reporters. He will be transferred to the corrections facility in Bishop's Falls, where he will await his next court date.

Brake was originally charged with possessing weapons for a dangerous purpose and uttering death threats, as well as flight from police, dangerous operation of a conveyance, unauthorized possession of a firearm and careless use of a firearm.

RCMP Cpl. Jolene Garland told CBC News shortly after his arrest that the force believed Brake was a "threat to cause death or serious injury."

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