Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Around the Arctic March 03, 2014 - 5:27 am

Vancouver police seek long-term offender from Iqaluit

Mosesee Nowdluk, 48, slipped away from Vancouver halfway house

NUNATSIAQ NEWS
Mosesee Nowdluk in a Vancouver police handout photo. (PHOTO COURTESY VANCOUVER POLICE DEPARTMENT)
Mosesee Nowdluk in a Vancouver police handout photo. (PHOTO COURTESY VANCOUVER POLICE DEPARTMENT)
Mosesee Nowdluk on June 24, 2005, smiling and talking to reporters as he exits Iqaluit's old courthouse building following a hearing on an application by the Crown to have him declared a dangerous offender. (FILE PHOTO)
Mosesee Nowdluk on June 24, 2005, smiling and talking to reporters as he exits Iqaluit's old courthouse building following a hearing on an application by the Crown to have him declared a dangerous offender. (FILE PHOTO)

The Vancouver police department has issued a public plea for help tracking down an Iqaluit man who received long-term offender status from a Nunavut judge in 2005.

Mosesee Nowdluk, 48, whose surname is also spelled “Nowdlak,” was released from custody Feb. 27 after serving more than 10 years in jail for offences committed in May 2001 during a violent two-day crime spree in Iqaluit.

Nowdluk, known in Iqaluit by the nickname “Cowboy,” did not return to a halfway house in Vancouver where he was supposed to begin living under the terms of a 10-year supervision order imposed in 2005.

On Feb. 28, Vancouver police released an alert that said Nowdluk is now deemed unlawfully at large and is wanted Canada-wide.

Police said he stands five feet, six inches tall, weighs 176 pounds, and was wearing a black jacket, brown tee-shirt, blue jeans and black running shoes with red laces.

His tattoos include a teardrop on his right cheek, two roses on his right forearm, a bird on his left forearm, and a star on his chest.

In 2003, Nowdluk whose criminal record contains nearly 80 convictions, was found guilty of arson with disregard for human life, assault, assault with a weapon, and break, entry and theft.

Dr. Phillip Klassen, a forensic psychiatrist, said in a report that Nowdluk displays a “classic” psychopathic manner and said his crimes vary in intensity depending on the availability of liquor, weapons and victims.

During one part of that crime spree, Nowdluk set fire to apartment 307A in Iqaluit because he thought somebody had stolen his booze during a party.

The Nunavut court sentenced him to 30 months imprisonment in 2003 on most of those offences.

But on one conviction, for bludgeoning a man’s head with a hammer, the Crown applied to the court to have him declared a dangerous offender.

A dangerous offender designation would have had him effectively incarcerated for the rest of his life, with little chance of release.

But after a lengthy hearing that didn’t finish until 2005, Justice Earl Johnson stopped just short of declaring him a dangerous offender and opted for the “long-term offender” designation.

In that decision, Johnson ordered an eight-year prison sentence, followed by 10 years of close supervision in a special type of facility that doesn’t exist in Nunavut.

The Vancouver police said anyone who sees Nowdluk or has information on his whereabouts should not approach him but should call police immediately.

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