A man charged with 56 offences that span more than a year — many of them laid in connection with recent rural crime sprees — remains in custody after being denied bail.
In Brandon provincial court on Monday, Crown attorney Grant Hughes described the following crimes during a bail hearing for 23-year-old Curtis Sutherland, who was last known to live outside of Brandon.
The following allegations against Sutherland haven’t been proven and he’s presumed innocent. Hughes said that on:
• Nov. 27-29, 2016 — Three ATVs and an industrial battery charger were stolen from a shed in the Riverdale Municipality. One of the ATVs is later found at the Ebb and Flow First Nation.
• Nov. 29/30, 2016 — Two pickup trucks — a 2009 model and a 2004 — were stolen from the garage and yard of a home in the RM of Souris-Glenwood. Each truck had a long gun in it at the time. The guns weren’t loaded, but ammunition was in the trucks. A generator, chainsaw and blower were also stolen. The owner’s wallet was in one of the trucks, and his credit card was used at an ATM and a couple of convenience stores. Police used video from the stores to identify a suspect.
• Nov. 27/28, 2016 — A 2008 pickup truck stolen from where it was parked outside a shop in the Municipality of North Cypress-Langford. It was later found in the north end of Brandon. Police say they found a fingerprint belonging to Sutherland on the driver’s side door jamb. In the truck, police found the above stolen battery charger, blower, chainsaw and generator.
A second spree happened overnight on Jan. 3/4, 2017:
• A resident in the Cartwright-Roblin Municipality called police to report an ongoing early morning break-in at his property. He scares off three intruders who are wearing balaclavas, but they had entered his garage and shed and taken items such as power tools.
• The Cartwright golf course was broken into and a set of golf clubs stolen.
• Thieves broke into a workshop at a property in the in the Municipality of Killarney-Turtle Mountain. They took three dirt bikes, various power tools and a snowmobile.
• A truck was stolen from a yard in the RM of Argyle after the keys were left inside.
• Another truck was stolen from outside a Cartwright home. Inside was a shotgun and a rifle. The truck and these two guns were later found by police.
Hughes said Sutherland was arrested on the afternoon of Jan. 4 in Brandon.
He was wanted in connection with a machete attack outside an Amaranth hotel on Sept. 18, 2015 that left a man with a severe cut to his hand. He was also wanted for allegations of two separate assaults on his ex-girlfriend at times when he attended her Brandon home while on court orders not to.
But the above crimes aren’t the only offences Sutherland is charged with. He’s charged in connection with various other car thefts, break-ins and arsons from December.
In total, he faces 38 property-related offences out of the Killarney and Souris areas, such as car theft, possession of stolen property, break and enter and vehicle arsons.
That includes two further allegations of break-ins in which at least two other guns were stolen. While Hughes said police raided a Brandon home, no mention was made whether these guns were found.
Hughes said that RCMP continue to investigate whether numerous other break-ins and thefts across southern Manitoba are linked.
Also charged in connection with the same property crime spree is 22-year-old Preston Todd Dean Whitford, whose counts include 34 property-related charges from the Souris area.