Inmate who left Burnside correctional facility was serving 20 years for 'brutal' sex assault
Published Wednesday, July 17, 2019 11:02AM ADT
A high-risk offender, who walked away from a Dartmouth halfway house last week, is wrapping-up a 20-year term for a brutal assault on an ex-girlfriend.
He failed to return to the Jamieson Community Correctional Centre last Thursday night and was arrested the next day.
It's the second-time in about six weeks an inmate walked away.
Getting to the Jamieson Community Correctional Centre is as easy as getting to end of Morris Drive in the Burnside Industrial Park, but increasingly, there are growing concerns about how easy it is to get out.
"I just heard he just left," said Robert Reid, an inmate at the correctional centre."That's what the rumour is. He just left. People sign out for five hours and they go."
In this case, "he" is Scott David Desrosiers, wrapping-up a 20-year sentence for a horrific, 10-hour attack on a former female partner.
Parole documents obtained by CTV News suggest the board did have concerns about his coming release, writing "your brutal and sexually violent attacks became the expression of accumulated hostility, resentment and anger. You are also said to have resorted to excessively violent sexual behavior, humiliation and pain inflicted against victims who you perceive have wronged you."
Just six weeks ago, another offender -- 35-year-old Joshua James Turner -- bolted from the same facility shortly after he checked in.
He terrorized two women in a dental office in Winnipeg.
Some businesses in Burnside have told CTV News they've increased security in the wake of the incidents, and even those who haven't admit to being more concerned.
"This is such a busy area, and you know, this is a problem with everybody," said Kelly Kitchen, who works for a nearby business. "What do you do with people who are, released after so many years of a serious sexual offence. I don't have the answers, but I just know it's a very scary situation."
But even here, consensus is hard to find.
"I think, as a society, we have a responsibility to rehabilitate people, and I think Burnside is probably a great location for something like this where people can be isolated from young families and communities and so on and so forth," said Jeff Dwyer, who works at another company near the correctional centre.
After making a restorative justice announcement in Halifax on Tuesday, the provincial Justice Minister Mark Furey remains confident federal authorities will find a solution.
"(I'm) always concerned when those circumstances present themselves, but there's processes in place to review the circumstances, and in these circumstances, satisfied that that work is underway," Furey said.
Reid says he heard Desrosiers had a good motive for leaving.
"Yeah, I heard his mom was sick," Reid said. "He wanted to see her and he couldn't get passes here."
With two incidents now on the books, it's clear the community concern in Burnside now extends far beyond the end of Morris Drive.
Desrosiers' parole was formally suspended on July 12, the same day he bolted from the Jamieson Community Correctional Centre. Court officials say he has no scheduled appearances in Nova Scotia, but it's very clear he won't be returning to this halfway house anytime in the near future.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Bruce Frisko.