Teens formally charged with power pole vandalism

Damage arising from vandalism in Terrace, BC cost an estimated $25,000

TWO TEENS who allegedly tried to cut down a power pole outside Caledonia Senior Secondary have been charged.

“Two young persons are at this point formally charged and facing a charge of mischief endangering life in relation to the alleged sawing of the hydro pole,” said Neil Mackenzie, communications council for the Criminal Justice Branch of the provincial government.

The two boys, ages 15 and 17, cannot be identified under the Youth  Criminal Justice Act.

Two boys were arrested Oct. 29 after witnesses called police at 2:48 a.m. to report two figures in dark clothing doing what looked like trying to saw through a power pole outside the school, said police at that time.

Two teens ran when they saw police but officers followed and found two teens attempting to hide in bushes on the Howe Creek Trail and followed footprints in the snow to find a saw, said police.

Classes were cancelled for the day at Caledonia while BC Hydro crews replaced the pole.

The cost to replace the pole was more than $25,000, said BC Hydro at that time.

The case was initially handled by prosecutors here but the file has been transferred to Prince Rupert Crown council.

“It is my current understanding that this charge was in fact initially approved by Crown in the Terrace office,” said Mackenzie.

“A prosecutor in the Prince Rupert office, now responsible for the file, is reviewing the case and will ultimately decide what charge or charges will proceed.

“This was done because there is a connection between a potential witness in the case and the Terrace Crown Counsel office and Crown concluded that to avoid any perception of a conflict in the circumstances, it was appropriate to have the case handled by a different office.”

The teens’ first court date was to comply with instructions Nov. 27.

Their next scheduled court date is Jan. 8 to consult with legal counsel.