Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Banished criminal allowed back in province

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A chronic criminal who agreed to be banished from Manitoba for five years has struck a deal with justice officials that allows her to return home.

Alanna Phizacklea can remain in the province provided she agrees to undergo continued mental-health care and take her prescribed medication. In exchange, the Crown agreed Tuesday to remove the banishment order from her unique conditional sentence she recently violated by returning to Manitoba.

"The Crown's concern has always been her mental health," said prosecutor Susan Helenchilde. She told court Phizacklea recently changed her tune about treatment after previously vowing she doesn't need any help.

"This is a radical departure from her previous position," Helenchilde said.

Phizacklea's unique legal journey began last March when she was sentenced for a string of crimes, including criminal harassment of two individuals. The Crown had sought a prison term but agreed to a more lenient two-year conditional sentence and three years of supervised probation as long as Phizacklea agreed to take a one-way ticket out of town and not come back for the duration of her punishment.

The reason, as explained in court, is Phizacklea has mental-health issues and a history of stalking people she encounters and becomes fixated on. Her latest victim was her probation officer, who had been assigned to work with her following a previous conviction.

Phizacklea went to British Columbia to live with her mother, but returned to court in October by video link and fought to overturn the condition when her mother decided to return to Winnipeg. Phizacklea claimed she was tricked into accepting the banishment condition, but provincial court Judge Ted Lismer refused to overturn it.

That didn't stop Phizacklea, who made good on her promise to return home. She was arrested two days later and has been in custody since.

www.mikeoncrime.com

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 19, 2012 A6

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