POLICE NOTES: RIDE Update, Social Media Video, and “Sextortion”

There are 137,000 stories in the Royal City, and this is some of them. Looking at a week’s worth of media releases from the Guelph Police Service, there’s a lot gong on in our little city crime-wise speaking, so let’s run down some of the charges, issues, and requests for information from the Guelph Police Service over the last seven days.

***Please note that not all offenses and police calls are reported in the daily Guelph Police media release.

Another Child Porn Bust

A 70-year-old man was charged with possessing child pornography, distributing child pornography and accessing child pornography after the Internet Child Exploitation Unit along with members of the Technological Crimes Unit, Tactical Response Unit and other officers executed a warrant on an east-end residence on Wednesday morning.

Social Media Video Tied to Bigger Bust

On Wednesday, Guelph Police said that they were aware of a video making the rounds on social media where a Guelph man can be heard making racial slurs and using other profanities. They then said that this was a 28-year-old Guelph man who was arrested and charged with a number of offences “in relation” to this video including robbery and weapons offences. The complaints are also being reviewed by the GPS’ hate crimes co-ordinator. If you have any information on this, get in touch with Constable Thomas Lecomte at 519-824-1212, ext. 7163, or email him at tlecomte [at] guelphpolice.ca

Bitcoin Scams Are Last Week, Beware “Sextortion” Scams

Guelph Police said that there have been a dozen so called “sextortion” scams this year resulting in losses between $200 and $1,500. How does this work? “Typically, victims are contacted via social media and begin interacting with the scammers. These interactions eventually result in the victim sharing intimate photos or videos of themselves, which the scammer then threatens to publish or send to the victim’s contacts if they do not send more photos or pay a sum of money,” said a media release.

According to the police, the latest case saw a local man send several explicit images to a “woman” he was chatting with on social media who then turned around and threatened to post the pictures on a group chat with the man’s friends and family unless he paid. He sent three separate e-transfers to an address in the Philippines after which the scammer deactivated the original account. These crimes are difficult to investigate, and the victims are often too embarrassed to coming forward, so police are again warning everyone to be careful what you share online and with whom.

RIDE Update from Last Weekend

The Festive RIDE (Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere) program continued last weekend, with approximately 800 vehicles stopped, and 25 drivers who were asked to provide breath samples. No criminal charges were laid, but six motorists were temporarily taken off the road, including four drivers were given 72-hour licence suspensions, and two others who had their licences suspended for 72 hours after testing positive for cannabis. Guelph Police say that RIDE checks will increase throughout the holiday season.

Assault

A 32-year-old Guelph man was charged with possessing weapons for a dangerous purpose and carrying a concealed weapon after police responded to a report of a man who brandished a knife at another man. When police caught up with him, they discovered that he was carrying a knife inside his sleeve, as well as two folding knives and several razor blades.

Police are looking for witnesses to an assault on Home Street at around 10 pm on Saturday night. One man went to the Hamilton trauma centre with serious injuries after a group of six to eight young people between the ages 16 and 20 approached the victim and a male associate. If you have any information, get in touch with Detective Constable Scott Biser at 519-824-1212, ext. 7131, or sbiser [at] guelphpolice.ca.

A 21-year-old Guelph man was charged with assault causing bodily harm, assault and mischief after police were called to a residence in the area of Gordon Street and Arkell Road. A woman in her 40s was repeatedly struck and choked by the suspect who was known to her.

Traffic

A 23-year-old Kitchener woman was charged with obstructing police and careless driving after giving her mother’s name as her own at a traffic accident in Guelph on October 20.

A 43-year-old Guelph man is charged with failing to comply with an undertaking and driving while suspended after police spotted a man behind the wheel of a car in the area of McElderry Road who was charged with impaired driving and dangerous driving back in September .

A 27-year-old North York male was charged under the Highway Traffic Act with driving while suspended and G1 driver unaccompanied by a licenced driver after being stopped once last weekend for driving under the influence and then being stopped two more times by the same officer for driving with a suspended licence.

A 33-year-old Guelph man was charged with impaired operation and stunt driving after the police spotted an an SUV speeding in the area of Edinburgh Road South and College Avenue West was clocked at 91 kilometres per hour in a 50 zone.

Police are investigating a hit and run collision downtown Tuesday evening when a northbound light-coloured four-door sedan collided with a southbound vehicle at the Norfolk Street and Paisley Street intersection. Police are looking for witnesses and/or dashcam footage, and if this is you, call Constable Michael Braga of the Guelph Police Service Traffic Unit at 519-824-1212, ext. 7144 or email him at mbraga [at] guelphpolice.ca.

Theft/Break-Ins

A stolen school bus from Waterloo Region was found at an address on Speedvale Avenue East in Guelph on Monday morning. The bus was reported stolen in Kitchener on Sunday and was involved in a minor collision that evening in Cambridge. Anyone with information on this stolen school bus is being asked to get in touch with Constable Matt Ball at 519-824-1212, ext. 7525, or email him at mball [at] guelphpolice.ca.

Over $5,000 in tools were stolen from two storage containers at a construction site on Edinburgh Road South near Inkerman Street on Sunday. If you have any information, call Constable Frazer McCrindle at 519-824-1212, ext. 7327, or email him at fmccrindle [at] guelphpolice.ca.

A 36-year-old Guelph man was charged with four counts of possessing controlled substances for the purpose of trafficking, possessing stolen property and two counts of breaching probation, in addition to an outstanding warrant for robbery, dangerous driving and flight from police. A patrol in the area of Speedvale Avenue East and Gladstone Avenue  spotted the man on Friday morning, and police were able to take him into custody after he attempted to flee on a bike. A search recovered quantities of suspected red and blue fentanyl, crystal methamphetamine and crack cocaine with an estimated total value of $4,100, and yes, the bike itself was also stolen.

Other Notes

A man of no fixed address was arrested Friday night after he was acting shifty with police on Friday night, he had been hanging around outside an address he had been banned from by a restraining order. When he was searched, police found a lot drug dealing paraphernalia including 75 unused baggies, a digital scale and two cell phones with four additional sim cards. They also found $17,210 in cash on his person from his various pockets and bags.

A dispute over a $4 parking fee at a business in the area of Dawson Road and Speedvale Avenue West led to $1,200 in property damage after a person in their pick-up drove across a lawn to get around parking control arms.

A Toronto man was arrested on an outstanding warrant after missing a court date three months ago on charges of assault and breaching an undertaking. The [real] Canadian Border Services Agency had detained the suspect at a facility in Mississauga, but it was not disclosed why he was in their custody.

A 30-year-old Guelph man is charged with resisting arrest and breach of probation after the police where called to a downtown address where the man was causing a disturbance. Officers caught up with the man a short time later where they were finally able to take him into custody despite a short foot chase and other attempts to resist arrest.

A man smashed both glass doors at a business in the area of Alma Street North and Crimea Street on Thursday night. He didn’t steal anything. Police are looking for a man who was wearing a black sweater with the hood up, jeans and black shoes, who was last seen on foot southbound on Alma Street North. If you have any information, get in touch with Constable Nicholas Doner at 519-824-1212, ext. 7230, or ndoner [at] guelphpolice.ca.

Total calls for service last week: 1,425

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