45 charges were stayed against three suspects found in the possession of prohibited weapons, pipe bombs, and disguises in Williams Lake as it was determined that there was no longer a substantial likelihood of conviction.
A preliminary inquiry concluded Thursday in Williams Lake Provincial Court with a stay of proceedings against Tye Jones, James Juke, and Dyami Rickman from Kamloops who were taken into police custody on December 14, 2016, after police discovered pipebombs, prohibited weapons, and disguises inside a vehicle during a traffic stop.
Jones, Juke, and Rickman were facing 13 charges each which included occupying vehicle which there is firearm, explosives: intent bodily harm, possession of controlled substance, possess break-in instrument, possessing weapon for dangerous purpose, possess firearm without licence or registration, and possessing loaded/unloaded w/ammo prohibited/restricted firearm.
Juke was also facing 6 charges of possession of firearm contrary to order.
Alisia Adams with the BC Prosecution Service of the Ministry of Attorney General said in an email that Crown counsel directed a stay of proceedings against Jones, Juke, and Rickman after a careful review of all of the material available including some new evidence, and as a result, their charge approval standard was no longer met.
Under the Charge Assessment Guidelines, charges will only be approved where Crown counsel is satisfied that the evidence gathered by the investigative agency provides a substantial likelihood of conviction and, if so, that a prosecution is required in the public interest.
A substantial likelihood of conviction exists where Crown counsel is satisfied there is a strong, solid case of substance to present to the Court.
“This test applies at all stages of the prosecution. If at any point, the prosecutor concludes that this test is no longer met, a stay of proceedings is the appropriate course of action,” explains Adams.
A media release issued by police on December 15, 2016 said that the Williams Lake RCMP were responding to a call for service on December 14 in the city and while on route observed a vehicle driving in the vicinity of the call. The occupants caught the attention of members who observed suspicious activity and initiated the traffic stop finding potential explosive devices later identified as pipe bombs, a handgun, long-barreled firearms, prohibited weapons, and disguises in their possession.
A Stay of Proceedings according to a webpage by the B.C Government on the province’s criminal justice system means Crown counsel has dropped the charges ending the prosecution
“However, for a serious charge, they may re-start the prosecution within one year of the stay,” the page states. “For a less serious charge, Crown counsel may re-start the prosecution within six months of the incident that led to charges.”
“If the prosecution is not re-started within those time frames, the matter is over.”