Blue Line

News
Brampton man’s gun arrest points to bail problems, Peel deputy chief says


March 23, 2021
By Canadian Press

March 23, 2021 – A Brampton man’s recent arrest months after he was earlier charged with allegedly robbing a man at gunpoint is adding to Peel police’s ongoing frustration with Ontario’s bail system, Peel’s deputy chief says.

Deputy Chief Nick Milinovich said while it would be unfair to point blame at any one part of the justice system, the case is “an opportunity for us to start working with some of our other justice partners in unpacking that and trying to figure out how we can do a better job of managing those scenarios.”

“We can do better, we need to,” Milinovich said.

Police arrested Darnel Rhooms, 23, of Brampton, following a March 12 search in Toronto that led to the retrieval of a loaded .40 calibre gun, a 9 mm Glock and a drum magazine. The charges, which police say are tied to the investigation of a Jan. 16 shooting in Brampton, include several charges of failing to comply with release order and two counts of possessing a loaded prohibited or restricted firearm.

Advertisment

Following the arrest, Rhooms was also charged over an alleged armed break-and-enter from December 2020.

Court files show that he had been previously arrested and released on bail over a September 2019 robbery with a firearm, also in Brampton.

Rhooms was arrested over that incident by Vancouver police in December 2019, then returned to Peel, where he was also charged with failure to comply with a condition to stay within the province of Ontario.

Court documents show Rhooms was released on $50,000 bail later that month with an order to wear a GPS ankle bracelet.

According to police, that condition was amended in March 2020 to let Rhooms remove the ankle bracelet.

Milinovich, who said he was “shocked” to find out Rhooms did not have GPS tracking, acknowledged that the courts must weigh a variety of factors before signing off on an individual’s release or probation conditions. Still, he said Peel police are seeing “more and more” arrests of people who are on bail.

Until last summer, investigators had no way of knowing when an accused was being released on GPS monitoring because there was no shared tracking system and the courts were not obligated to notify police.

Milinovich said that changed following the August shooting death of Darian Hailey Henderson-Bellman, 25, allegedly by her on-and-off-again boyfriend Darnell Reid.

Reid had been charged three times for violating court orders not to be in contact with Henderson-Bellman in the year leading up to her death. At the time of the shooting, he was on bail for unrelated charges of possessing an illegal firearm.

“After the Darian Henderson-Bellman homicide we built a process to make sure that we were notified by our courts when these types of releases took place,” Milinovich said.