Man Sentenced After Rum Theft at Knifepoint
A Canadian man has been sentenced to four months in jail for pulling a knife on Lansdowne Liquor Store employees while attempting to steal several bottles of rum. The rum theft occurred in downtown Kamloops, British Columbia.
Back in Nov. 2021, Christian Andrew Richard, 35, was witnessed by employees trying to hide bottles of rum inside his clothing. Richard was confronted and a bottle was knocked out of his hand, while another employee attempted to prevent Richard from leaving by blocking the store’s exit.
According to Castanet, Crown prosecutor Evan Goulet said in court, “[Richard] had some trouble getting out the door, and then he pulled out a knife.” The prosecutor continued, “He told [the employees] to let him out. And then he turned around and pried the door open, taking a bottle of Captain Morgan rum with him.”
After which, the police found Richard nearby with the allegedly stolen $47 (about $35 USD) bottle of Captain Morgan still on his person. Quite an expensive bottle of Captain Morgan compared to the typical prices in the U.S.
Richard was arrested for this crime and later released with a court date. He was also prohibited from processing any weapons.
Then, in April 2022, police responded to a call reporting that a man armed with a knife was threatening someone in a parking lot behind a south Kamloops hotel. The police found Richard with two weapons, a knife at his feet and a blade in his pocket. Richard was again arrested but gave police his brother’s name and birthdate. This attempt to mislead the police resulted in an obstruction charge being added to his offenses.
Richard was not a stranger to run-ins with the police as his criminal record included 37 prior convictions.
On Sept. 22, 2022, Richard pleaded guilty to one count of theft under $5000, one count of processing a weapon for a dangerous purpose and one count of obstructing a peace officer and failure to comply.
Richard was originally charged with robbery for taking the bottle of rum from the liquor store, but the Crown accepted a plea of theft.
In Canada, the crime of robbery involves the use of force and can be subject to a maximum penalty of life imprisonment. Theft does not involve the use of force and therefore is a lesser charge.
Castanet reported that the defense lawyer Eric Rines argued Richard had, “hit rock bottom.”
Richard is excepted to receive credit for time served. He also received a one-year probation and is prohibited from possessing weapons and visiting Lansdowne Liquor Store.