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Yarmouth County robbery against senior results in second prison sentence of seven-and-a-half years

Yarmouth Justice Centre. TINA COMEAU PHOTO
Yarmouth Justice Centre. TINA COMEAU PHOTO - Tina Comeau
YARMOUTH, N.S. —

The final person to be sentenced for a robbery against a Yarmouth County senior has received a sentence of seven-and-a-half years in prison.

Craig Andrew Pike, 36, was handed the prison sentence in provincial court in Yarmouth on Sept. 16. A co-accused, Tyler John Rawcliffe, 36, had received the same sentence the week before. Both men – who had entered guilty pleas to robbery; break, enter and theft; unlawful confinement and wearing a disguise – were given time-and-a-half credit for time spent in custody on remand prior to their sentencings. This knocked the sentences down to 72 months, as opposed to 90 months.

They will eventually be eligible for parole.

Both men were also given a lifetime probation to own or possess firearms and have to submit their DNA to the national database. 

Crown Attorney Alonzo Wright described the two accused men as "lying in wait" on Sept. 13, 2018, before confronting and physically subduing the 77-year-old homeowner at a Plymouth, Yarmouth County residence. After forcing the homeowner to hand over money that he kept at his home, the men then forced the senior to drive them to another location in his van. They then threw his keys away and took his cell phone. One of the men also took money from the man’s wallet. Duffus found his keys, drove home and the police were called.

The men had been dressed in dark clothing and had their faces covered during the robbery.

A third person charged in the case, Lacey Heroux, received a four-year prison sentence after pleading guilty to a charge of conspiracy. The court was told Heroux, a family friend, had gone to the residence days before the robbery to “scout it out” and had passed on information to Pike and Rawcliffe. When Pike was asked in court is he had any comment about that facts that were read into the court record, he only disputed what was said about Heroux, even though she did plead guilty to a charge of conspiracy. "Lacey didn't go to the house to plan it out," Pike said.

The Crown noted that Pike had a conviction of robbery in his record, for which he had received a three-year sentence.

The sentence sought in this robbery was a joint recommendation by the Crown and defence.

Pike was also sentenced on a drug charges, for which he received a concurrent 24-month sentence. The federal Crown said when Pike was arrested for the robbery, he had 13.8 grams of cocaine in his possession, along with other drug paraphernalia.

“I believe that drugs spurred this home invasion and robbery,” federal Crown Hugh Robichaud said, adding that drugs continue to destroy lives, drive crime and tear apart communities.

A victim impact statement outlined the sense of security and trust that had been taken away from the homeowner and his wife as a result of the incident, and the deep and troubling impact the crime has had one them.

Judge Claudine MacDonald reiterated how traumatic it must have been for the homeowner to not only be robbed at his home – where he should feel safe – but to also be forced from his home, not knowing if he would see his family again.

Pike was given the opportunity to address the court prior to his sentencing. When his co-accused, Rawcliffe, had been given the opportunity to speak at his sentencing, he had told the court and the victim’s family he was extremely sorry for what occurred.

Unlike Rawcliffe, when Pike was asked if he had anything he wanted to say he told the court “no.”

A member of the public seated in the courthouse could be overheard saying, "How about an apology?"

READ ALSO: 'What if' questions still haunt family as man sentenced for robbery

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