June 22nd, 2024

Convenience store robbery nets man 15 months in jail

By Delon Shurtz - Lethbridge Herald on January 14, 2023.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDdshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

A Lethbridge man will spend more than a year in jail for robbing a convenience store of less than $100.

At about midnight on July 29, 2021, Rex McCall Siemens walked into a 7-Eleven store in the 2000 block of Mayor Magrath Drive and told the clerk he had a gun and would kill her if she didn’t give him money.

Siemens made off with $80 to $90, but was apprehended by police shortly afterward. He was not in possession of any firearms at the time of his arrest.

Siemens, who was 26 years old at the time of the offence, recently pleaded guilty in Lethbridge provincial court to one count of robbery and was sentenced to 15 months in jail. He was, however, given credit for time he spent in remand custody following his arrest, reducing his sentence by 38 days.

Crown Prosecutor Lauren Atkinson told court a 15-month jail sentence is considered on the low end of the scale for robbery, but she noted Siemens didn’t breach any of the conditions placed on him when he was released on bail after his arrest.

Calgary lawyer Shaun Leochko said his client has several challenges in life and suffers from a mood disorder and a mixed-personality disorder with anti-social and schizotypal traits, and has long struggled with mental health issues.

“He’s had a difficult upbringing and childhood,” Leochko said.

In addition to his jail sentence, Siemens will also be on probation for 18 months following his release from custody, during which he must obey several conditions, one of which prohibits him from going to the convenience store. He must be assessed and take treatment and counselling for drug and alcohol abuse, and he must submit a sample of his DNA for the National DNA Data Bank. He is also prohibited from possessing certain weapons for 10 years and others for life.

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