BOYLE – A man from White Bear First Nation, Sask. received a 120-day jail sentence after he was caught driving a truck that belonged to the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo just south of Grassland.
In Boyle Court of Justice Sept. 12, Trevor Herle, 33, pleaded guilty to possession of stolen property over $5,000, and failing to comply with a probation order, as part of a joint submission between Crown prosecutor Ashlee Kirby and defence counsel Robert Gladu.
Justice Andrea Hemmerling accepted the joint submission, which will see Herle serve 75 days in jail after his 30 days of pre-trial custody are enhanced at a one-and-a-half to one rate.
“These are very early guilty pleas, and that does show a high level of remorse,” said the Justice. “Alongside the fact that this was a joint submission, the sentence seems fit given your criminal record.”
Herle, who appeared via CCTV from the Edmonton Remand Centre, was apologetic for committing the crime, but said his wife being “in distress” had forced his hand.
“I’m awfully sorry for my actions due to the crime that I have done. I knew it wasn’t right, but I did it for a serious reason and for the woman I loved,” said Herle. “I’m sorry for committing this crime, that’s all I have to say.”
Gladu told court that his client was from White Bear First Nation and was waiving his right to a Gladue report. Justice Hemmerling agreed to waive the victim-fine surcharge, noting that Herle had been in custody for a while before his pleas.
Kirby told court that on Aug. 14, 2023, Boyle RCMP were dispatched to a call regarding the stolen truck. Wood Buffalo were tracking a fleet vehicle that had been stolen from them the night before.
The truck pinged in Wandering River, and then near Grassland, before a police officer travelling on Highway 63 saw the vehicle pass him going southbound — Kirby said that the officer had observed an Indigenous man driving the vehicle.
The officer lost sight of the vehicle while turning his car around, so he began to patrol while keeping an eye out. He later observed the vehicle parked at a residence with the lights still on. The constable saw a man fitting the description at the end of the driveway. Upon his arrest, Herle told officers that someone had given him the truck.