June 16th, 2024

Man accused of breaking into car dealership hoping for bail

By Delon Shurtz on July 16, 2021.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDdshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

A Calgary man arrested earlier this week and accused of breaking into a Lethbridge car dealership, will remain in custody at least until Monday, or even longer if he fails to convince a judge to grant him bail.
Eric Christopher Smith had hoped he would be released sooner, but during the accused’s first appearance in Lethbridge provincial court Thursday, the Crown said he needed time to prepare for a bail hearing, and the matter was adjourned.
Under Section 516 of the Criminal Code, a person in custody may be remanded no more three days before having a bail hearing, unless the accused consents to a longer remand.
Smith, who attended court by phone from the Lethbridge Correctional Centre, was represented by duty counsel, who said the accused wanted a bail hearing as soon as possible. Duty counsel lawyer Brett Carlson had explained Section 516 to Smith, but suggested the accused needed to hear it from the judge.
Police officers with the Priority Crimes Unit and Crime Suppression Team arrested a 25-year-old man on Tuesday in the area of Stafford Drive and 3 Avenue South. The arrest was made after police noticed a vehicle on the westside bearing a licence plate reported stolen out of Calgary.
Charges were laid in connection with the stolen licence plate, and relating to an incident July 2, 2021, in which a vehicle rammed into a garage bay door at a car dealership in the 2300-block of 5 Avenue North. Once inside the building, a subject stole a 2021 truck valued at $68,000. 
Police reported that the vehicle used in the break-in at the car dealership had been stolen hours earlier from a northside home. It was recovered, as was the truck stolen from the dealership, which was bearing the stolen licence plate.
Smith faces three charges of possession of stolen property under $5,000, and single charges of shopbreaking and driving while prohibited.

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