Man who fled police – which resulted in Barrie officer firing his gun – has been conditionally released
Tuqur Jones, 23, pleads guilty to possession of a stolen vehicle and dangerous driving following a September 2018 chase in the eastern part of town
Man who fled Barrie police in stolen car with three others – narrowly missing an officer who then fired his gun at them – got a conditional discharge and two years probation.
Tuqur Jones, now 23, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to possession of a stolen vehicle and dangerous driving.
The court heard that Jones was with another man and two underage girls when they traveled to Barrie in a Honda Civic they had stolen earlier in Toronto.
Crown Attorney Lynn Shirreffs told court the girls were involved in a robbery / assault and fled in the waiting Civic driven by Jones.
In the meantime, the theft / assault was reported to the police with a description of the car and a partial license plate number.
Reading an admitted statement of fact, Shirreffs said the four men went to the Grove Street East Shell station to purchase gasoline on September 17, 2018. One of the girls attempted to prepay with a credit card. stolen debit, which was denied. She returned to the car and received a credit card to use.
“Two police cars then arrived at the scene (…) and they tried to block the stolen car,” Shirreffs said.
One of the officers got out of his SUV and drew his gun.
The four then quickly fled from the scene with Jones at the wheel, “narrowly missing the officer who got out of his vehicle.”
Shirreffs said Sgt. Mike Chytuk “discharged his gun, which hit the center rear of the suspect vehicle and the rear passenger.”
The four took off along Rue Saint-Vincent, reaching speeds of up to 149 kilometers per hour, then crashed into a tree in Rue Saint-Vincent and Rue Blake, where the posted speed limit is 50 km / h, the court said. The four men then fled on foot and three were apprehended nearby with the help of the police canine unit.
The other man, Ashtoney Thompson, fled but was apprehended in Toronto “weeks later on a warrant with the bullet still in his shoulder,” Shirreffs told court.
When asked by Ontario Superior Court Judge Michelle Fuerst if he agreed with the factual account read by the court, Jones replied, âI do. However, he made no further comment when offered the opportunity.
His lawyer, James Mencel, said Jones lived with his mother in Scarborough. He finished high school and did a year at Cambrian College, but took time off to work. He thinks of a future in heavy equipment. He also said Jones is involved with his church.
Fuerst accepted the joint sentence proposed by the Crown and defense attorneys, granting Jones a conditional discharge followed by two years probation, 100 hours of community service and a two-year driving ban.
Jones will also write a letter of apology to the owner of the car.
The guilty plea, Fuerst said, takes on greater importance during the pandemic as courts have limited hearings, which creates more backlogs.
After Tuesday’s virtual court appearance, defense attorney Mencel said Jones was ready to move on with his life.
âMy client takes responsibility for his actions and is happy to begin the process of putting this case behind him. It is regrettable that he suffered lasting trauma as a result of the unwarranted use of force by the police that night, âhe said.
Co-accused Ashtoney Thompson pleaded for theft in December and was also released on parole and 12 months probation.
It was also noted that the courts treated the girls involved. Their identity is protected under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.
The officer, meanwhile, has been investigated by the province’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) and faces a criminal charge. At the time, Chytuk had been in the force for 28 years and worked as a sergeant.
Last fall, Chytuk was returned to trial on a charge of criminal negligence causing bodily harm following a three-day preliminary hearing. He is due to return to court on October 13.