By Delon Shurtz - Lethbridge Herald on November 1, 2023.
A 31-year-old southern Alberta man caught with a stolen pick-up truck has been sentenced to four months in jail.
Carter Dylan Rains was caught on Aug. 20 of this year after a manager at Walmart on Mayor Magrath Drive South noticed a man sitting in the 1999 Dodge Ram truck in the parking lot and who appeared to be intoxicated by alcohol or drugs.
The manager, who was concerned about the condition of the driver, opened the door, and numerous .22-caliber bullets and spent casings fell onto the ground. She also saw a pistol behind the seat and called the police.
Police, who suspected Rains was under the influence of intoxicating substances, noticed a glass bubble pipe on the drivers seat and they seized a BB air pistol that was on the rear seat.
“The truck itself ended up being reported stolen only two days before and the owner of the vehicle said that wasn’t his air pistol and he wasn’t sure how it got there,” Crown Prosecutor Bob Morrison said Tuesday in Lethbridge court of justice, where Rains pleaded guilty to one count of possession of stolen property under $5,000.
The owner told police, however, that the “several hundred” bullets and casings belonged to him, and there was a rifle in the truck when it was stolen from the Pincher Creek area.
Rains, who was “groggy and docile,” was subject to a release order at the time of his arrest, prohibiting him from consuming alcohol or drugs. He pleaded guilty to one count of failure to comply with release conditions and was further sentenced to 30 days in jail, to be served at the same time as his four-month sentence.
Morrison noted Rains has a criminal record with convictions for similar offences, the most recent only a month ago when he was sentenced to 120 days for possession of a stolen car, driving while prohibited, drug possession and impersonating another person. He was, however, credited 120 days for time he had already spent in custody, which completed his sentence.
Calgary lawyer Shaun Leochko pointed out his client had been abandoned by his parents when he was 12 years old and lived with family members. A brother passed away from a drug overdose and he has been struggling with addiction, as well.
Rains, who appeared in court Tuesday by CCTV from the Lethbridge Correctional Centre, also faces a charge of housebreaking to commit theft. He pleaded not guilty to the charge and the matter was adjourned to set a trial date.
Additional charges, including unauthorized possession of a prohibited/restricted weapon, careless use/storage of a firearm, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, and possession of a firearm/weapon obtained by an offence, were withdrawn.
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