The woman charged with several robberies was displaying symptoms of COVID-19
A 34-year old woman was recently charged with a series of break-ins and robberies that occurred in Park Extension and Saint-Michel over the course of the winter. She was also said to be exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 at the time of the break-ins
The accused, Uttuqi Kadjulik, is being charged with the break-ins of up to 14 homes, where she allegedly stole credit cards and other valuables. These often occurred in the middle of the night while people were in their homes asleep.
“Oftentimes, the victims were in their home at the time of the intrusion,” wrote the Judge Dennis Galiastos, who was presiding over the case. “On a few occasions, the victims came face-to-face with the trespasser,” he added.
The alleged perpetrator is an indigenous woman who suffers from schizophrenia and has substance abuse issues, according to court documents.
Spitting at police
“We had information that she had COVID-19,” stated police spokesperson Jean-Pierre Brabant to CTVNews. Many of the victims were exposed to her during the encounters but no cases were subsequently reported.
She is said to have been arrested on multiple occasions for similar offences and to have acted aggressively and belligerently to responding police officers by yelling, swearing and spitting at them.
“Already a repulsive act, but whose abhorrence is heightened in the current COVID context,” wrote Judge Galiastos of the defendant’s actions.
“When she was arrested, we already had protocols in place. So, when she was transferred to the detention centre, we had specific areas set aside to make sure that all the people in detention were safe,” said Brabant of the SPVM.
4 arrests in 24 days
According to the ruling, Kadjulik was found with over 50 credit cards, an array of identification cards from various individuals and various sets of keys. These were confiscated by police.
At the time of the arrest, she was already on probation for similar crimes in 2018, for which she was jailed for 5 months and was barred from being on the island of Montreal.
She was arrested and detained 4 times in the span of 24 days, with many of the alleged crimes occuring in Park Extension. She was nonetheless released by authorities on 3 separate occasions.
“Each time she was released, she immediately and consistently violated [her] conditions,” wrote Judge Galiatsatos.
In one instance, the defendant allegedly broke into a Park Extension apartment at 4:50 am, waking up the resident and asking them “do you want to have sex?”
11 days later, Kadjulik allegedly broke into the home of an 87-year old Park Extension resident, where she asked for money and stole the victims keys.
The alleged perpetrator’s defence concentrated on the victim’s vulnerability her adverse circumstances associated to being indigenous, with accompanying schizophrenia and drug addiction.
Since 1999, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that judges needed to take into account the adverse circumstances of indigenous people as to break incarceration cycles and stigmatization.
“A bail court must give full consideration to the background and profile of the accused, including the fact that she is aboriginal and the fact that she had a very difficult past,” added Judge Galiatsatos on the matter.
Nonetheless, the judge specified that this should be practiced in a way that is judicious. “It goes without saying that interim release will not – and should not – be automatic for aboriginal accused,” explained Judge Galiatsatos.
The judge therefore ordered Kadjulik to remain in custody until a trial could be held.