Thwarted home invader found guilty of gun charges
By Canadian Press
By Canadian Press
A man well known to the police and courts has been found guilty of six gun-related charges from a Prince George home invasion in the making.
The arrest of Julien Naseem Abdala Yasin Lazarre, 22, on the morning of Sept. 25, 2019 was the product of a chance encounter.
Two members of the Prince George RCMP’s street crew unit were called to a report of a theft from a vehicle in the 1400 block of Carney Street when they spotted Lazarre and another man, Devin Albert Olson, 32, in the back yard of a crack shack.
When the officers ordered them to stop, both took off though an alley. But while Olson ran for a distance, Lazarre walked away slowly, provincial court judge Susan Mengering said in issuing her verdict.
A search of Lazarre uncovered a rock of heroin, fentanyl, 33 tablets of ecstacy, a thick wad of cash adding up to $5,720, a flip phone and a cellphone. Significantly, RCMP also found an empty pistol holster shoved into the waist band of his pants.
A subsequent search of the area by a dog and handler found a loaded handgun placed on a small mound behind a nearby utility pole. Police also found a folding knife and a laser sight that could fit the pistol closer to where Olson had surrendered.
That led defence counsel to suggest Olson may have possessed the gun but Mengering ruled that the markings on the holster found on Lazarre were a match for the handgun.
The DNA found on the pistol was from an unknown person but Mengering found it doubtful that someone else could have placed the pistol at the spot. In part, she noted the serial number makes it traceable to the owner who, in turn, would face serious consequences for leaving a loaded and restricted handgun at such a spot.
Lazarre was also found guilty of resisting arrest for failing to stop despite officers ordering him to do so three times.
Of the six gun-related counts, the most serious appears to be possessing a weapon for dangerous purpose and was related to Lazarre’s attire when he was found.
Despite the weather, Lazarre was wearing a bulky winter coat with the hood up, along with gloves and sunglasses and was carrying a face mask in his satchel, suggesting he intended to carry out a home invasion at the house.
Lazarre will be sentenced at a later date. He has remained in custody since his arrest nearly 500 days ago. In a previous decision, Mengering found the search did not violate Lazarre’s charter rights.
Lazarre has had several brushes with the law. In June 2019 he was sentenced to time served for his role in a drug-related kidnapping and, for a time, had faced a count of attempted murder from a December 2017 shooting incident. The count was later dropped due to a lack of evidence.
In January 2020, Olson was sentenced to one year of probation for identity theft and breaching an undertaking or recognizance in relation to the arrest. He had been released on a recognizance on the same day he was arrested but by November 2019 was back in custody for breaching the recognizance.
Olson continues to face seven gun related charges from an October 2020 arrest. He was released on $1,000 bail.