Editor’s note: the B.C. Prosecution Service originally indicated the suspects were being charged with assault with a weapon, but later clarified the charge is assault causing bodily harm. This story has been updated to reflect that. Black Press Media apologizes for the error.
Three Trail firefighters have been charged after an alleged assault on a homeless man back in April.
BC Prosecution Service confirmed to Black Press Media that Gregory Ferraby, Richard Morris and Wesley Michael Parsons have been charged at the Rossland Law Courts. All three men are each facing a charge of assault causing bodily harm from the incident on April 23. Ferraby, 53, is also facing a charge of uttering threats, with the offence date listed as 10 days earlier.
In an update from police Friday (Dec. 1), Sgt. Mike Wicentowich said the three men have turned themselves in to the Trail and Greater District RCMP detachment and will make their first appearance on Dec. 7 in Rossland Provincial Court.
Wicentowich told Black Press Media that all three men work for the Kootenay Boundary Regional Fire Rescue, but the incident was not connected to their duties or workplace. The victim, he said, was living in his vehicle at the time and was considered homeless.
Wicentowich added that Ferraby’s charge of uttering threats on April 13 is connected to the April 23 incident, and both offences were directed toward the same victim.
The Regional District of Kootenay Boundary, which operates the Trail fire station, said it would be releasing a statement Friday (Dec. 1). In an undated picture on the website, Ferraby and Morris are listed with the crew, with Ferraby as a captain.
The Trail Firefighters Local 941 has a photo of Morris, listed as Capt. Rick Morris, presenting a cheque on Nov. 13, as well as one with a Mike Parsons, the vice-president of the Trail Fire Fighters Charitable Society, presenting another cheque on Oct. 30.
It was on April 23 that a Trail and Greater District RCMP officer received a report that a 49-year-old Trail man was assaulted by three men in an alley in the 900-block of Spokane Street, according to a statement at the time.
Wicentowich said that an officer found the man on the ground in the alley with serious injuries as he was allegedly punched in the head several times, may have lost consciousness and a serious shoulder injury. He was taken to Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital.
The victim said he was assaulted by a 52-year-old Trail man and two others when he was taking his garbage out to the dumpster.
Wicentowich said the victim and the attacker were known to each other.