Implemented over the past couple of years throughout the RCMP, a crime reduction program has been targeting prolific offenders to reduce overall crime.
The program has RCMP work in conjunction with people in the justice system,alternate justice and others to identify prolific offenders who are at a high risk to reoffend.
Staff Sergeant Paul Thalhofer said the majority of the workload for RCMP is created by only about five to 10 per cent of people they deal with who come into contact with law enforcement repeatedly.
By concentrating resources on those offenders, he said the crime rate can be reduced by ensuring those persons, once released from custody, are following the conditions placed on them such as curfews and staying away from alcohol, weapons or specific persons.
Within the Fort St. James RCMP detachment, Thalhofer said there is a list of persons who have been identified who are released from incarceration into the community or on curfews or other conditions, and their photos are posted for officers.
Prolific offenders are assigned to specific RCMP members to keep an eye on them and ensure the person is complying with conditions.
Thalhofer said the goal is to be “proactive rather than reactive” and to “target those people to do what we can to keep the community safe.”
The end goal, though, is to create changes in the behaviour of the prolific offenders through the pressure on them to follow the law and the conditions put on them by the court.
“We hope that when we do the curfew check, they’re there,” said Thalhofer. But if the person is not where they are supposed to be, RCMP will immediately seek a warrant and after locating the person, will pursue charges.