A poorly executed pair of truck robberies will tack eight months onto a man’s prison sentence.
The would-be-thief, Jordan McConnell, 29, listened to the news from the correctional facility he calls home. The Crown outlined the details of the trouble taking place almost exactly two years ago, starting the night of Sept. 24.
A man made a stop at the Oil Springs gas station around 7:30 pm, leaving his keys in the truck as he went into the store. McConnell, lurking nearby, sprinted over to the red 2002 F-250 and sped away. Police received several calls throughout the evening and into the next morning about the vehicle but couldn’t locate it, succeeding only in finding McConnell’s footwear.
Things began to go south for McConnell in the morning though when people came across the truck stuck in a bush lot. McConnell emerged from the bushes and asked for help towing the truck free. Police were called to recover the truck but the thief was gone when they arrived.
McConnell was on the move and spotted again about 2:30 that afternoon. A man sitting in his workshop on Petrolia Line west of Telfar Road heard rummaging from the garage. He went to investigate and found McConnell going through his toolbox and truck.
Asked by the owner who he was and what he was doing, “I was going to take your truck but since you’re here dude, I’m not going to,” was McConnell’s reply.
He then grabbed two bags from the owner’s truck and took off. Police were called and brought in the Canine Unit. It took little time for the dogs to find McConnell hiding under farm equipment, bringing an end to his ill-planned crime spree.
“He indicated that at the time he was under the influence of narcotics,” Defence Lawyer Terry Brandon says of McConnell. Her client described himself as “high” during the offenses.
“While incarcerated Mr. McConnell has really been working within the penitentiary infrastructure to change his attitude and to address the addiction issues so that when he comes out he’ll be on solid footing and not return to that lifestyle,” says Brandon.
McConnell has a criminal record and previously served time in Ontario jail. But that’s not where he attended court from – McConnell is currently imprisoned in Alberta on criminal matters committed in the western province.
“I just want to thank you for bringing the date forward and say sorry to the victims that I took the vehicles from,” says McConnell.
He added his plan now is to “just move forward in life and happy to put all this (expletive) – oh pardon my language – all this stuff behind me now.”
Justice Krista Leszczynski chose to disregard the lack of court decorum and accepted the joint position of 90 days for each vehicle theft and 60 days for break and enter. She told McConnell despite the serious crimes it showed initiative to reach out from afar and resolve pending matters.
“When you ultimately are released from the penitentiary you can have a fresh start… I wish you luck Mr. McConnell,” the justice says before closing the matter.
McConnell still has charges from other jurisdictions to resolve down the road. The details of his crimes in Alberta or how long his current sentence is weren’t heard in court.
Alex Kurial, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Independent