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Province increasing focus on repeat violent offenders

The B.C. government is creating dedicated police-prosecutor-probation officer teams to keep communities safe from repeat violent offenders.

Provincial officials said having a coordinated response across the justice system will be a key factor in improving public safety.

Twenty-five million dollars over three years will go towards 21 Crown counsel and 21 other professional BC Prosecution Service staff, four full-time BC Corrections officials, nine correctional supervisors, nine probation officers based in correctional centres and 12 dedicated probation officers based in community corrections offices.

The coordinated approach is meant to assist Crown counsel in making decisions about charge assessments and prosecutions.

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“We are pulling out all the stops to make sure British Columbians feel safe,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General in a release.

“Our government made a commitment to tackle the complex issue of repeat violent offending, and we’re backing that promise with concrete action. With the Repeat Violent Offending Intervention Initiative, government agencies will have the resources they need to pool their expertise and work collaboratively to protect communities and help people break the cycle of offending.”

According to the B.C. government, the initiative will be implemented in every region of the province and is expected to begin in April.

Files by Josiah Spyker, My East Kootenay Now

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