Eight Rankin Inlet teens arrested for petty crimes
Youth to face court in November
(updated 6:30 a.m., Aug. 28)
Eight teens have been arrested in connection with a recent petty crime wave in Rankin Inlet.
Young vandals have been causing havoc on the streets for the entire summer.
They have stolen all-terrain vehicles from a local store, and damaged refrigeration pipes in the local arena where they stole a zamboni and drove it over the pipes, police said.
Those arrested are all between the ages of 13 and 17, said RCMP media spokesperson Cst. Ian Allen.
All youth have been released from custody since their arrest, he said.
Police are investigating other identified teenagers in relation to similar petty crimes in the community.
“It is believed by the local residents that this rash of incidents is in relation to a small group of youth and not a general trend within the community,” Allen said.
The youth are set to go to court in November, with charges dating back to the spring.
Mayor of Rankin Inlet Pujjuut Kusugak said there’s only a small percentage of troublemakers in the community.
“[But] everyone likes to feel like their community is safe, and when things like this happen, it puts a damper on things. In general people feel that much more unsafe where they’re supposed to be most safe — at their home,” he said.
So, the recent incidents have spurred the town to look at forming a committee which would look for ways to curb crime in the community.
With the possibility of the Meliadine gold mine opening up 25 kilometers north of Rankin Inlet, Kusugak said it’s important to have measures in place to prevent crime.
“If this mine does open up, we will have a boom in our community. So to have things in place like this, it’s a step towards preventing stuff like petty crimes in our communities,” he said.
Youth aged 10 to 17 make up almost 20 per cent of Rankin Inlet, which has a population of about 2,260.