Steve Powless jailed for smoke shack… sort of

Posted: October 7, 2010 in Attorney General of Ontario, Caledonia, Headlines, Jeff's Blogs, Natives, OPP, Steve Powless, Tobacco Kings

October 7, 2010 

By Jeff Parkinson 

Steven “boots” Powless went on trial in Cayuga this week for Mischief, Obstructing Police, and Failure to comply with court ordered bail restrictions stemming from his proprietorship of an illegal smoke shack on the private property of Ernie Palmer. Ultimately “boots” was sent to jail, but not for selling illegal smokes, or for resisting arrest. 

The manner in which this unfolded is peculiar in my view. It’s not the illegal smokes that got him jailed, but his contempt for the Canadian justice system. Here’s how it went down. 

On Monday October 4, 2010 “Boots” and 2 of his sons Steven and Gregory Powless were to go on trial for Mischief and Obstructing Police (by resisting arrest), but all 3 were given conditional discharges by the crown for these smoke shack related crimes. The defence and the crown agreed to a statement of facts which included: 

  1. Mr. Palmer owns his land
  2. Powless was uninvited on the property
  3. Mr. Palmer lost his property insurance and was charged by the county
  4. Powless refused to leave
  5. OPP attempted to remove him but he called for backup
  6. OPP attempted a second time and did arrest him and his two sons – each resisted arrest.

That first fact is crucial as this means that via his lawyer, Powless agreed that he does not own Mr. Palmers land. This demonstrates that Powless doesn’t actually believe the delusional rhetoric that he uses to justify his criminal behavior to the media.

For these 2 charges he was given a discharge while about to go on trial for failing to comply with the terms of another discharge. 

On Wednesday October 6, 2010 “Boots” was to stand trial for Failure to comply with the court ordered conditions that were placed on him when he was convicted of Mischief in Brantford in 2009, and another order when he was arrested on July 9, 2009 on the property of Ernie Palmer. He refused to enter a plea to the charge, and was found guilty by Justice Joseph Nadel. 

His history of prior convictions was read to the court which includes sexual assault in 1991, dangerous driving in 1994, and mischief in June of 2009 for his actions at the Hampton Inn construction site in Brantford. When found guilty in Brantford, he was given a conditional discharge with conditions such as keep the peace and be of good behavior etc. He was placed under a court order to behave himself. 

When he was arrested on July 9 2009 for mischief and resisting arrest, he was given bail with the conditions that he reside at Ohsweken, not go near Ernest Palmer, stay off Ernest Palmer’s property, keep the peace and be of good behavior and be home after 11:30 pm. 

While out on bail, Powless moved into and continued to run the illegal smoke shack on Ernie Palmer’s property between October 28 2009, and November 13, 2009 in violation of his bail conditions.

For this he was sentenced to 17 days in jail less 5 days already served. One day in jail for each of the days that he lived in the smoke shack in October and November 2009. 

In his ruling, Justice Nadel noted that being an aboriginal offender is not a get out of jail free card, that Steven Powless’ failure to comply occurred while under 2 other conditional discharges by court and that his rejection of Canadian authority and its institutions resulted in bringing him before the court again, that Powless was willing to accept the benefits of the Canadian justice system but not its obligations and that he was an aboriginal Canadian subject to Canadian law.

That last point is important as Aboriginals have been claiming that their race makes them immune to Canadian law for their crimes in Caledonia, and elsewhere in the Country since long before I started following this stuff in 2006. Nowhere else in history have I been able to find a case of people claiming that their race makes them above the law, nor a ruling where any court has recognized such nonsense as fact. 

While it would be easy to cry foul about the discharges handed to all 3 here, and even easier to point out that here we have McGuinty crown lawyers failing yet again to prosecute Natives for Caledonia related crimes, the fact remains that Steven “boots” Powless is sitting in jail tonight as a result of one of his illegal smoke shacks, and that’s progress.

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