Brian Douglas Louie, seen here being escorted out of the Penticton courthouse by sheriffs in 2014. Western News file photo

Alleged Osoyoos Indian Band home invader denied bail

Brian Louie’s family said the RCMP failed to communicate in home invasion and assault incidents

The family of an Osoyoos Indian Band man accused of a violent home invasion and a struggle with police took aim at what they feel was a lacking police investigation and a failure to communicate.

Brian Douglas Louie was not released on bail after alibis fell through in Penticton’s courthouse Friday morning, his third appearance before Judge Gregory Koturbash on the matter, with his first appearance on Monday.

While he was initially appearing on a matter of alleged assaults on police during a mental health call, Louie said he was arrested on his way into the court on an alleged home invasion.

Related: OIB man convicted of sex assault back before court

It isn’t clear whether the first matter was an issue of mental health or of drugs, though Louie suggested he could attend residential drug treatment.

A relative of Louie spoke in court Friday afternoon about issues they have with Louie’s case, saying when police were called on that first matter, the family only wanted help getting him to a hospital.

He was turned down at the South Okanagan General Hospital — which has a history of capacity issues and doctor shortages, including emergency department closures — so Louie’s relative said she asked police if they could take him to Penticton Regional Hospital.

“They said ‘no, if we’re going to take him, we’re going to take him to the cells,’” she said.

After expressing concerns about Louie not getting the help he needed, his relative said she was told PRH had a team available and waiting for Louie.

“Nobody let us know that Penticton hospital mental health was waiting, so the cops said ‘we have no choice. We have to charge him for assaulting a peace officer, or else we’ll have to let him go,’ and he was in a bad state at the time.”

And when he was arrested for alleged involvement in the home invasion nearly two weeks ago, his relative said the family never heard about the allegations, and no questions were asked among his family about the allegations.

“Why didn’t they call us and say these accusations have been made about him. Nobody came asking or looking or asking for either one of them, and then just picked him up at the court,” she said.

“All these processes that should have been done in place wasn’t done, so now he’s left sitting in here trying to defend himself.”

Louie allegedly burst into a house, assaulted a man on the bed and then chased a woman into the kitchen, hitting her in the head with a chair. In his first appearance on March 5, Louie said he had alibis to back up that he wasn’t involved, but come Friday those alibis had not materialized in court.

His relative said one of the alibis was unable to speak to police in time due to a death in the family and another did not make a statement due to a recent traumatic experience.

“So I don’t think he should be falsely accused for something he didn’t do and being held in here like this for something that he didn’t do,” she said. “He’s paid for the things that he’s done, and these newspapers, these headlines are making his time in there harder.”

Because the alleged home invasion happened while Louie was on bail from the struggle with police, he is in a “reverse-onus” situation, meaning it is incumbent on the defence to argue why he should be released rather than the Crown to argue the latter.

Koturbash expressed some regret for the bail hearing turning into a mini-trial, but despite Louie’s relative speaking up, Koturbash said the Crown’s case was “not exceptionally strong but not unusually weak, either.”

He also had to take into account Louie’s criminal past, including a violent sexual assault from 2012, his most recent offence, for which he got a lengthy prison sentence.

Gladue principles also mandate judges take Indigenous heritage and overrepresentation of Indigenous people in the criminal justice system when making decisions regarding people with First Nations heritage.

Still, Koturbash said he could not release Louie from custody at this point, believing there was “substantial” risk for reoffending.

Report a typo or send us your tips, photos and video.

Dustin Godfrey | Reporter


Send Dustin an email.
Like the Western News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Column: Attending a Japanese wedding reception

Japanese marriage celebration a mix of eastern and western influences

Pursuit of Excellence defeats OHA in female prep hockey final

Okanagan Hockey Academy lost to Pursuit of Excellence 6-3 at the CSSHL final in Penticton

Naturewise: tales of ravens and their tricks

Quoth the raven, ‘Nevermore.’

Oliver holds onto Wine Capital of Canada designation

It might be hard to swallow for other communities but Oliver remains Wine Capital of Canada

Seniors prefer funeral to lifestyle planning

Survey finds 73% of seniors have a will, only 13% have long-term care plan

VIDEO: B.C. Mounties reunite veteran with lost military medals

RCMP say Zora Singh Tatla, who served in the army in India for 28 years, is the righful owner

Experts urging caution as rabbits die by the hundreds in B.C. city

Province of B.C. confirms more positive tests for rabbit haemorrhagic disease

Federal government seeks public feedback on pedestrian safety

What safety measures do you think need to improved for pedestrians and cyclists?

Search continues for 10-year-old Montreal boy missing since Monday

Montreal police said they are exploring every possibility in search for Ariel Jeffrey Kouakou

Airline passenger-rights bill claws back protections for travellers: Advocate

Bill C-49 would double tarmac delays, scrap compensation for flights affected by mechanical failures

Canadian research vessel to explore 19th Century shipwrecks

Commissioned this week in Victoria, the RV David Thompson is Parks Canada’s newest vessel

VIDEO: ‘New wave’ of anti-pipeline protests return to Trans Mountain facility

About 100 demonstrators with Protect the Inlet marched to the Burnaby terminal Saturday

B.C. man to plead guilty in connection with hit-and-run that killed teen

Jason Gourlay charged with failure to stop at the scene of accident, attempting to obstruct justice

Rescue boat theft marks third in 3 years for B.C. SAR team

Eight-metre Spirit of Harrison rescue vessel was stolen Friday night, found Saturday morning

Most Read