Political commentary and Opinion
15 year old killed by street rat, has 16th birthday
A child's life has ended and his birthday comes forth, and what has been done to protect our kids from crackheads, junkies runnnig loose on the streets of Victoria, and who's really to blame for letting criminals do as they please in the drug trade.
Outside the Times Colonist building today has a tree decorated in bright balloons and birthday party hats and adorned by flowers and cards. A sweet 16th birthday celebration for a boy, stabbed to death, for no apparent reason by a person who not only had mentasl health issues but also a drug user.
Justin Wendland, 15, who was killed while waiting for a bus on Douglas Street at 8 p.m. on June 3 when he was knifed in the chest by a homeless person.
“Happy sweet 16,” reads one card. “Always thinking of you.”
A bouquet of roses lay at the base of the tree with a note: “RIP buddy. We love you and miss you.”
Balloons read, “We love our angel,” and “Forever loved.”
At the time of the fatal stabbing, bystanders said no words were spoken between the two individuals and they had no idea what provoked the sudden and seemingly random attack on the young boy.
“There is nothing to suggest the accused and the victim knew each other prior to this incident,” said Victoria police spokesman Sgt. Grant Hamilton, in an earlier interview. Corey Daniel Barry, 39, was charged with second-degree murder in relation to Wendland’s death.
Fifteen minutes after the fatal stabbing, Barry turned himself in to police.
Barry is due back in court Dec. 15 to set a date for a five-day preliminary inquiry this spring.
Defence lawyer Tom Morino confirmed in June that Barry “has long-standing mental health issues for which he is receiving medication.”
Barry, who friends say spent most of his adult life on the streets battling drug addiction and possible mental illness, frequented Our Place drop-in centre on that street, however police said nothing indicates his path ever crossed Wendland’s.
Since his death, the teen’s murder has raised calls for more services for the mentally ill.
Wendland was affectionately called “Pudgy” by his friends. He worked part-time after school and on weekends at the McDonald’s restaurant on Pandora Avenue. His older sisters, Kayla, 20, and Courtney, 17, said Wendland had taken the part-time job to help his single mom pay for his mixed martial arts classes.
Justin’s mother, Raj Wendland, was devastated following her son’s death.
Wendland was described by friends as a boy who liked to hang out with friends and was very family-oriented — often making dinner and always looking out for his big sisters.
Outside the Times Colonist building today is a tree decorated in bright balloons and birthday party hats and adorned by flowers and cards.
Children being Attacked on the Streets of Victoria BC - Monday, November 01, 2010
Editorial Opinion Column by Dick Freeman
- Monday, November 01, 2010
Recently an Editorial Opinion Column was done called "A City of Crime and Violence, Is this a place where Tourists would want to go?"
Victoria, where you can imagine seeing a city, with quiet neighborhoods', parents taking their children to school or children walking with their pets. Many friendly faces while taking a leisurely stroll in their neighborhood, where you think you feel safe from crime, but is it really safe in the streets of Victoria?
In another Editorial Feature we take another look at the City of Victoria's Streets, were children's personal safety and their risk of being attacked by street people is becoming an epidemic in Victoria, where violent "crack heads", street people with mental illness, are seeking an easy score, and are now going after young children, (aged 12 to 15 years old).
People in the community are getting a good look at the fallout of homelessness", where a rash of crimes, to property crimes in the community to violence, that are now being used on young children in local neighborhoods.
A 15 year child named Justin Wayne Wendland was stabbed in broad daylight at a Victoria bus stop, by a well know drug user who has mental health issues. The boy was found bleeding profusely from a stab wound to the torso. "The victim was immediately rushed to hospital with critical injuries, but tragically did not survive. "The so called 39-year-old suspect who later gave himself up to police was well known to the police and was identified as Cory Daniel Barry.
In another incident, Chek Six News ran another news story just recently of another 15 year old boy, who was terrorized and attacked at knife point, while coming out of a concert from the Victoria Conservatory of Music in the 900 block of Johnson Street, by another well known drug user, street person who tried to robbed the child. As it was that young child was lucky enough to escape, before he became another victim, just like Justin Wayne Wendland. That person was later apprehended by police.
Why are our children are at risk every day on the streets of Victoria, even waiting for a bus in local neighborhoods", or waking to and from home, is due to the drug trade on the streets of Victoria, that is becoming more violent and targeting children by themselves.
In another incident, on Sunday, I was getting ready to take my children out for a night of fun, treat or treating for Halloween, when my two children came running out of their room yelling dad, a young girl is screaming for help, while my one son was pleading for myself to do something.
As I ran outside to where the young girl was, I couldn't believe my eyes in what I was seeing, people just standing around, while a young girl is laying on the ground crying, who was viciously attacked and robbed of her wallet and camera, by two female street people.
People in the community who didn't even try to restrain those female street persons committing the assult and robbery, until police showed up, has myself wondering, what is happening to Victoria.
Men, women who apparently didn’t show enough chivalry or concern, as one man in a white truck, ignored what was taking place, while others looked on.
Luckily for the young girls sake, a women did stop to comfort her and who later took her to where the police were questioning people at the park.
On a personal level, I not only tried to assist the girl, the police, but managed to recover her wallet, that was thrown into a garbage can at the park, minus the camera, where drug users homeless people and drug dealers are seen on a daily basis there in the park, quite often.
I do want to make a note that the VicPD, who have many other crimes to deal with, did respond as quick as they could, considering that I didn't hear about any other calls to the police being made, other then the one I made to them.
Police did later catch up with the two homeless people and did apprehended them. At the same time, why is it that parents are not being informed of these attacks by street people by those in authority, so at least parents can be fore-warned, so they can keep their children safe and from becoming victims of crime.
In another alleged incident in the down town core, a women and her child were pushed down a flight of stairs by another homeless person.
In three other separate incidents of crimes on children, which have yet to be verified by police, were allegedly to have taken place in the community on the streets of Victoria. It seems city hall is only concerned about passing bylaws to keep people off the boulevards, they call safety issues for cars, while the street violence increases in the community's, that is making people angry, that their children are being exposed to all levels of violence and crime in local area's as well as property crime that are running rampant with street people.
How many children have to be victims of crime, or have to die at the hands of homeless people, or crack heads with mental illnessness, before something is done to curb the violence on the streets.
The homeless and mental ill on the Streets of Victoria have gotten out of hand and half to be dealt with harshly and swiftly with laws already on the books. They the government and police should be rounding them up and putting them where they belong, hehind bars or house them in proper places that can deal with many homeless people's mental illnesses.
Coun. Philippe Lucas was against the bylaw. "I won't be supporting this motion, because I honestly believe it will fail to address for the better the issues faced by residents, by businesses and by the individuals currently living on Pandora Green," Lucas said.
Well that's ok for Coun. Philippe Lucas not to support the bylaw, but you do have to ask yourself what is she really supporting or for that matter what is the mayor supporting, when it comes to children's safety, it sure isn't about the safe and well being of children from the looks of things.
Children are our most valuable in our community, and they are now at risk, and what are those in Authority doing about it?
Now that the mayors house has had property crime committed on himself, the mayor might now understand how people in the community feel violated, when they have had property crimes committed on them over the years, while being terrorized by homeless people and crackheads.
As for the Mayor Fortin as he talked to press, Victoria city councillor Pamela Madoff arrived with condolences. "I just came to say how sorry I am," she told Fortin, hugging him. "There's nothing like feeling personally attacked on invaded when all you've tried to do is the right thing." The attacked was claimed by a group of extermist, called PG72, who beleive the use of terrorism, is the only way of getting what they want.
A spokesperson for the Victoria police said they have little suspect information. A sweep of the neighbourhood yielded little results. Forensic investigators planned to take samples of the paint and glass and dust the area for fingerprints Friday morning.
With addicts having a new drug of choice moving from heroin to crack cocaine. BC's Centre for Addictions Research says it is not a good move. The center says it means an increase in mental illness leaving downtown Victoria a sicker and more unstable place. The Centre for Addictions Research says addicts are making the switch to cocaine and crack because the drugs are readily accessible and cheap.
In the past two years since Our Place opened, and in the wake of a 2008 B.C. Supreme Court decision striking down the city's prohibition on camping in parks, the 900-block of Pandora has become a focal point for drug use and dealing, homeless camping and prostitution. Police calls to the area have skyrocketed and residents and businesses worry their neighborhood is being ghettoized. Now these people will be pushed right back into those back yards and the crazy cycle starts all over again, with the crime getting worse in some area's.
I'm Dick Freeman and that's my view...
What about everyones elses property, what is really being done about that!