Newspaper article The Canadian Press

In-the-News

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

In-the-News

Article excerpt

VANCOUVER - OVERDOSES AFFECTING EVERY REGION OF CANADA: PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICER

Canada's chief public health officer says while B.C. may be hardest hit by opioid overdose deaths, no area of the country is safe from the crisis.

Doctor Theresa Tam says deaths from opioid-related causes will almost certainly surpass the 3,000 mark this year.

Western provinces have been hardest hit, with 978 illicit drug overdose deaths in B.C. in 2016, but deaths in Eastern Canada are also rising.

People aged 30 to 39 account for the highest proportion of deaths, and Tam says illicit synthetic fentanyl and fentanyl-like drugs are a major factor.

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MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO TEEN'S DEATH

A B.C. man who told a parole board that he feared harming someone if he was released from prison has pleaded guilty to the second-degree murder of a Surrey teenager.

Forty-three-year-old Raymond Caissie had been out of prison for just 18 months in 2014 when he was charged with the slaying of 17-year-old Serena Vermeersch.

RCMP Staff Sgt. Dale Carr says the senseless death devastated the girl's family and outraged the whole community.

The detachment had issued a warning about Caissie when he was released from prison in 2013, calling him a "high-risk sexual and violent offender."

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CROWN WON'T APPEAL SCHOENBORN DECISION

The B.C. Crown prosecutors' office says it has no legal basis to appeal a recent decision in the case of Allan Schoenborn, who killed his three children.

A B.C. Supreme Court judge ruled last month that Schoenborn didn't fit the criteria for a high-risk designation, saying he committed the crimes while delusional.

Schoenborn was convicted of the first-degree murders of his daughter and two sons in February 2010, but a judge ruled he was not criminally responsible due to a mental disorder.

Prosecutors applied to have him designated high risk after a review board ruled he should have escorted access outside of a psychiatric hospital where he's being held in Port Coquitlam. …

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