Escapee captured quickly

Police were on a manhunt only 15 hours after an inmate’s reassessment placed him in Bowden Institution’s minimum security annex. Dean McClelland escaped the minimum security annex on April 26 and was arrested by the Calgary Police Service at a home in the northwest neighbourhood of Bowness two days later.

Police were on a manhunt only 15 hours after an inmate’s reassessment placed him in Bowden Institution’s minimum security annex.

Dean McClelland escaped the minimum security annex on April 26 and was arrested by the Calgary Police Service at a home in the northwest neighbourhood of Bowness two days later.

McClelland pleaded guilty to one charge of being unlawfully at large and one charge of escaping lawful custody in Red Deer provincial court on Tuesday.

His lawyer, Patty MacNaughton, said the judge put over sentencing as the charges against him are so similar. He will be back in court on June 13.

McClelland had been serving a three-year, eight-month and 15-day sentence in the medium security facility.

He pleaded guilty in May 2010 to one count of arson, one count of criminal harassment and four counts of criminal mischief causing damage. He was accused of burning down his former spouse’s rented house.

Innisfail RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Jeff Hildebrant said that the medium security facility is equivalent to what is viewed as a traditional prison with fences. The annex, the minimum security facility, however, is patrolled but has no fences.

“He was in medium security facility but after two years of serving that sentence without issue they had done a reassessment of him and at that time he was brought down to minimum and gained access to the annex,” Hildebrant said on Tuesday.

“That process had taken place within 15 hours of his escape. This guy obviously had a very focused intention and a plan.”

McClelland is now being held at the Red Deer Remand Centre and Hildebrant doubts if he will ever again be placed in an annex.

“He will have a very high risk assessment from now on.

“If he does not go to maximum security, at least for the short-term, than I would be very surprised about it,” Hildebrant said.

“He might get downgraded to medium at some point but this is a very serious change in his risk assessment.

“I do believe that there was considerable concern about him going after a victim of what had led to him being federally incarcerated in the first place.”

Rita Wehrle, assistant warden at the Bowden Institution, said McClelland has new charges before the courts that have to be addressed before they decide where he is placed.

“But certainly, because he is absconded, we would take in consideration where we would put him now.

“Rest assured any new information about him is taken into consideration in terms of how we deal with him.”

jjones@bprda.wpengine.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta's chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said province's test positivity rate for COVID-19 is steadily declining. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
One new COVID-19 death in Red Deer, 257 additional cases province-wide

Red Deer sits at 459 active cases of the virus

Eric Rajah and Brian Leavitt were awarded with Meritorious Service Medals by the Governor General for co-founding the Lacombe-based charity A Better World. The agency’s goal is to reduce poverty and boost education in Africa and Afghanistan. (Contributed photo)
Co-founders of Lacombe-based charity receive one of Canada’s highest honours

Eric Rajah, Brian Leavitt of A Better World are honoured by the Governor General

Nice Horse, a band with Central Alberta connections, won three times at the 2021 Alberta Country Music Awards. (contributed photo by Heather Pollock).
Nice Horse wins three times at 2021 Alberta Country Music Awards

Calgary-based band has some central Alberta connections

(BLACK PRESS file image)
AHS warns parents to keep button batteries away from small children

Some kids swallowed the small cells and were hospitalized

Many rural seniors are having to travel a long way to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Stettler residents are being told to go to Red Deer, Drumheller or Camrose. (Black Press file photo).
Rural central Alberta seniors have to travel far to get vaccines

Stettler residents are being directed to Red Deer, Drumheller or Camrose clinics

Red Deer dogs Bunsen and Beaker helped save a missing pet recently. The two dogs have more than 80,000 followers on Twitter. (Contributed photo)
WATCH: Red Deer science dogs help save lost pet

Red Deer science-communicating dogs Bunsen and Beaker helped rescue a missing pet… Continue reading

A sign board in Toronto shows the closing number for the TSX on Thursday October 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
North American stock markets quieter after strong start to March as all eyes on bonds

North American stock markets quieter after strong start to March as all eyes on bonds

Shipping containers are seen at the Fairview Cove Container Terminal in Halifax on Friday, Aug. 25, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
After worst year on record, Canadian economy enters 2021 with double digit growth

After worst year on record, Canadian economy enters 2021 with double digit growth

Good Earth Cafes unveils strategy to move in when Starbucks closes Canadian shops

Good Earth Cafes unveils strategy to move in when Starbucks closes Canadian shops

‘Door is open:’ Ottawa ready to help pork producers affected by Olymel shutdown

‘Door is open:’ Ottawa ready to help pork producers affected by Olymel shutdown

Environment and Climate Change Minister Jonathan Wilkinson responds to a question in the House of Commons on Nov. 19, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada can’t ‘power past coal’ and keep exporting it, environment group says

Canada can’t ‘power past coal’ and keep exporting it, environment group says

A nurse assistant prepares a dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for COVID-19 during a priority vaccination program for health workers at a community medical center in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Andre Penner
Split over AstraZeneca vaccine sparks questions on who will get it as variants spread

OTTAWA — Canada’s chief public health officer says new COVID-19 cases are… Continue reading

Banana bread (file photo)
Calgary not-for-profit going bananas trying to off-load pallets of fruit

CALGARY — It’s been bananas at a Calgary not-for-profit as it tries… Continue reading

Image courtesy Creative Outlet
Edmonton chiropractor admits to sexually assaulting six female patients in 1980s

EDMONTON — A chiropractor has admitted to sexually touching six of his… Continue reading

Most Read