A man with a criminal record including weapon offences, drug possession and assault charges told the courts he was living at the city manager’s house, according to court records.
City manager Rod Sage’s address was also one of two addresses listed in an officer safety warning issued to police in December for another man with a lengthy criminal history, according to a CBC report.
Joey John Werbowski, 40, gave Sage’s address in Brandon provincial court as his place of residence while being released on a recognizance in May.
As such, Werbowski was on court-ordered conditions to live there while out on bail.
At the time he was facing multiple charges, including possession of counterfeit money, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, uttering threats and assault.
It is unknown if Werbowski actually lived in Sage’s house.
Werbowski’s lawyer, Jason Stitt, was unable to comment on Werbowski’s specific case.
In general, if a client gives an address as their own, Stitt said that is what is relayed to the court.
Stitt said he will only follow up if a client says they will be residing with a friend or family member, in which case he will check with the homeowner to ensure it’s OK they reside there.
"The inquiry from our perspective, is very much the honour system. Frankly, I don’t ever expect (a client) to be lying to me because if they’re not at that address, it’s a breach," Stitt said. "They understand the stakes."
If a person is released on bail and caught breaching, Stitt said they may face additional charges.
Sage’s address also came up in December 2018, according to the CBC, when the Brandon Police Service issued an officer safety warning to its members about 38-year-old John Rodney Wombdiska.
In the warning, police listed Sage’s house as one of two addresses for Wombdiska, the other being on McDiarmid Drive.
Wombdiska’s criminal convictions include uttering threats, weapon possession and assault, according to court records.
It is not known if Wombdiska ever lived at Sage’s home, or why police believehe did.
Sage removed himself from the Brandon Police Boardlast week after the attorney general announced the RCMP are now conducting a review into the circumstances of the death of Christine Robin Mitchell — who was living in Sage’s home when she died suddenly of a suspected overdose in July — as well as BPS’s subsequent investigation.
Her death remains under police investigation.
Brandon police Sgt. Kirby Sararas told The Brandon Sun that due to the request from the attorney general for the RCMP to conduct a review, all further comments regarding this matter will come from the purview of the RCMP.
Earlier this week, Sage was placed on paid administrative leave by Brandon City Council.
Mayor Rick Chrest told The Brandon Sun Tuesday afternoon that council will not be making any further comment on the matter while the investigations are ongoing.
» Twitter: @erindebooy