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Letter of Concern to the Prime Minister and the Minister of Justice

The Right Honourable Jean Chretien
Prime Minister of Canada
Room 309-S, Centre Block
The House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

The Honourable Anne McLellan
Minister of Justice
Room 707, The Conference Bldg
The House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

Dear Sir/Madam:

On June 29, 1999, in the community of Newmarket, Ont., "Young Offenders" brutally and with premeditated malice, chased, cornered, knocked to the ground and kicked a completely innocent 15 year old boy in the head until they fractured his skull and left him to die. He spent three months in a coma and will suffer for the rest of his life. His attackers were released on bail.

On November 15, 1999, 15 year old Dmitri Baranovski of Toronto was knocked to the ground, kicked in the head by a gang of youths and murdered. His parents and our community will suffer for the rest of our lives.

On October, 1998, 17 year old Clayton McGloan of Calgary was the victim of an unprovoked attack and murdered. His attackers, Young Offenders, were arrested and have yet to be sentenced. Our entire country mourns the loss of this gentle, precious young man.

These are only three of the countless violent criminal acts perpetrated by "Young Offenders" in our country. Criminals that have more rights than their victims.

We the undersigned respectfully demand the following immediate changes to the Canadian " Young Offenders Act" to guarantee the sanctity of life and freedom for all law-abiding persons and not just another weak piece of legislation such as the proposed "Youth Criminal Justice Act", Bill C-3.

Young offenders, now acting with apparent impunity and the freedom to injure and maim at will, must be held accountable for their criminal acts. Our legislative leaders must listen to the citizens of Canada and change the direction of our legal system back to law and order.

Victims must be given the same rights as criminals. A national program must be established in the public school system for early identification, intervention and rehabilitative action aimed at violent youth to help turn around potential future criminals.

Predators, regardless of age, who deliberately inflict pain and suffering to any innocent individual must be prosecuted as adults. There should be no transfer to youth court for murder, attempted murder, manslaughter, aggravated assault causing bodily harm, aggravated sexual assault or weapons offences.

"Gang member" status (organized crime) must be applied to allow for additional incarceration for gang crimes including swarming.

Mandatory counselling must be provided to all incarcerated violent offenders with the goal of eliminating repeat offences and assisting in rehabilitation prior to reintegration into society.

Minimum bail in a substantive amount must apply for violent crimes committed with weapons and public identification of all violent criminals regardless of age must be made mandatory.