VIDEO: Windsor Man Faces Dangerous Offender Status After Arson Conviction
A 38-year-old Windsor man faces a dangerous offender designation after being found guilty of arson in relation to a downtown fire.
Patrick Warren was convicted Thursday for setting the former Pour House restaurant ablaze on Chatham St. W. near Ouellette Ave. in February 2017. Investigators determined the fire — which caused $75,000 damage — was intentionally set in a small garbage shed behind the building.
As reported by CTV Windsor's Sacha Long, no one was hurt but Assistant Crown Attorney Brian Mannarin successfully argued the inherent risk of starting a fire, and the dangers posed to firefighters made this a serious offence.
In February, Justice Greg Verbeem ruled arson in this case is a serious personal injury offence, marking the first time a provincial judge has ever ruled in that manner.
Mannarin told the court he will seek a dangerous offender status for Warren — he's been found guilty of five other arson related charges and it's, "very obvious Mr. Warren may be a dangerous offender."
Crown attorneys can seek the designation during sentencing and must show that there is a high-risk that the criminal will re-offend. Warren will undergo a forensic assessment in Toronto with a formal hearing involving the attorney general to follow.
Once a decision on the designation has been made the judge will determine what sentence to impose.
Justice Verbeem expressed concern saying Warren "poses a high level of attractability to that type of conduct" and his inability to keep himself from committing this type of crime in the future, "may endanger human life by acts of arson."
According to Public Safety Canada, if a person is declared a dangerous offender, they could be jailed indefinitely.
— with files from CTV Windsor's Sacha Long.