Ankle-bracelet criminals concern island residents

June 19, 2017

It occurred  to me, as I thought about posting the following story, that maybe criminals who are sentenced to wear ankle-bracelets can choose where they go to live and ‘do their time’ or can even move from one residence to another.

I googled a question about this but could not get an answer.

I want to know because if a criminal can make a choice like this then s/he might very well choose to ‘do the time’ in an idyllic place such as the Gulf Islands.

But then, maybe not. Having to stay inside of your house while the temperate rainforest surrounds you might be worse than living in an urban highrise if you can never set foot outside of your property.

Maybe some lawyer or criminal out there, can enlighten me on this.

In the meantime, here is the article:

Gulf Islands Driftwood– Penders Edition

June 14, 2000

Ankle-bracelet criminals concern island residents

by Tanya Lester

RCMP Corporal Don Smawley and the RCMP Consultative Group on the Penders are concerned about probation officer requests from the Lower Mainland to re-locate electronically-monitored criminals to the Gulf Islands.

Smawley recently advised against a criminal being transferred to Saturna.

The individual wears an electronic bracelet that is monitored by the probation system.

The RCMP was opposed to the re-location because Saturna has no full-time police who could be called upon quickly if the individual were to violate his or her parole conditions.

According to Neville Avison, who is the consultative group chairman, one electronically monitored convict on Pender and two on Salt Spring Island have successfully completed their sentences.

Another had applied to go to Mayne but was denied, said Avison.

Probation officers agree to criminals’ applications to be located on the Gulf Islands if they obtain employment or can do community service work on the island in question.

Being from the island community or having family there is also viewed positively by the justice system in placement cases.

The people in question are non-violent and have committed minor property, drug or corporate crimes, said Avison.

They are allowed to travel to and from work, shop for groceries and perform other necessary functions outside their homes.

Most of their time is spent inside the residence, however, where the ankle-bracelet operates in connection with the phone line.

If the person is out of range, officials are alerted through the telephone system.

Avison began to look into the situation three months ago when Smawley expressed concern that requests from Lower Mainland probation officers might be on the increase.

The consultative group chairman contacted the assistant deputy minister of corrections.

Smawley told the Penders Edition that he thinks the Vancouver area justice system might be attempting to reduce their heavy workload by transferring these criminals to the Gulf Islands.

He said those who are sent to the islands from the Victoria area have connections to the community.

He does not feel criminals with “no roots” on the Gulf Islands should be transferred here.

Smawley questions, for example, allowing someone sentenced for drug charges being re-located to the Gulf Island, which are known as a drug trafficking area.

He noted as well that sometimes on the Outer Islands there is a limited amount of community service work available, especially under supervision.

— END–

To read more posts on this blog of eclectic topics that have previously appeared in print and written by Tanya Lester, go to and

Tanya now works as a psychic, a housesitter and also a reiki master. Find out more about her work by going to her web site: or her pages on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or Google. To contact her directly email: or text/call 250-538-0086.

Tanya’s book are Confessions of a Tea Leaf Reader and Friends I Never Knew ( available from or from the author) and Dreams and Tricksters as well as Women Rights/Writes.










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