A teen accused of a random, violent gang-related robbery has now been denied bail over allegations that he was involved in a fight outside a city high school.
The allegations surrounding the robbery are especially serious, Crown attorney Jim Ross said during the youth’s bail hearing this week.
“It’s random violence by a group of young men who told police they’re strikers for the Manitoba Warriors,” Ross said.
On Tuesday, Judge Shauna Hewitt-Michta denied bail for the 17-year-old.
Ross said the youth had been released by police following his arrest for the robbery.
However, he was back in custody over allegations surrounding a fight at Crocus Plains Regional Secondary School and allegations that he’d breached his bail curfew.
Outlining the allegations, Ross said the robbery happened around 3:45 a.m. on Sept. 1 along 21st Street near Brandon University. A young man and his girlfriend were walking home when three males approached and demanded the man’s headphones.
The man was attacked when he refused to hand the headphones over, but briefly escaped as he ran through yards and jumped fences.
The robbers, however, chased and caught the victim, who they then kicked and punched — they took the headphones and left the man lying on the ground in the fetal position.
The victim’s injuries included black eyes, an impacted tooth, a chipped tooth and cuts.
The victim’s girlfriend was standing nearby with a cellphone in hand and yelling at the attackers to stop.
The robbers told her to hang up and give them the phone or they’d go back and kill her boyfriend.
She tossed the phone toward the men and one of them picked it up as they fled.
Police stopped a number of young men a short time later. A woman who was with them had the stolen phone in her bra.
That woman said that one of the young men she was with — allegedly the teen who applied for bail — had given it to her.
He had blood on his shirt and a cut hand, apparently from punching the victim in the teeth.
Police also seized an iPod which held photos of gang symbols, a pool of blood and a shot of a cut hand.
The teen told police he was a Manitoba Warriors striker and had been living in Brandon.
One of his companions told police that he was in Brandon to sell drugs for the gang.
The teen with the cut hand was released by police on an order that required him to keep the peace and abide by a 10 p.m. curfew.
But on Sept. 13, it’s alleged that the same youth was involved in a fight with a Crocus Plains student, a fight witnessed by more than 80 students.
The accused wasn’t a student at the school himself, and ignored orders by the principal and vice-principal to leave.
Instead, he and the student fought. The teen’s brother, also said to be a Manitoba Warrior member, joined in the attack on the student.
Ross said police couldn’t attend the fight at the time, so the teen escaped.
Meanwhile, it’s alleged that he violated his curfew on the night of Sept. 14.
He surrendered to police on Monday. With his bail now denied, his next court date is Sept. 25.
The charges he faces in relation to the Sept. 1 incident include assault causing bodily harm and robbery. Two other males also face charges.
In addition, the teen is charged with causing a disturbance in connection with the fight at the high school and with failing to abide by a curfew.
Police have previously noted that a 14-year-old boy is also charged with causing a disturbance for the high school fight.
It’s not clear whether that’s the student or the accused’s brother.
None of the above allegations have been proven.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition September 21, 2012