Rash of break-ins
Youth suspected as ringleader

Richard Gleeson
Northern News Services

CAMBRIDGE BAY (Sep 06/99) - A pre-teen suspected of being one of the ringleaders in a rash of vandalism in Cambridge Bay is facing a raft of charges.

A 12-year-old will be appearing in the Nunavut Court of Justice on Sept. 20 to face at least 11 charges, ranging from break, enter and theft to assault with a weapon.

"There's a group out there that are off track right now and they're hard to get straightened around," said Mayor Wilf Wilcox.

Shortly after the July break and enter at Cathie Rowan's cabin, the hamlet issued a $500 reward for information on who had caused the damage.

Cambridge Bay RCMP reports that Rowan's cabin was one of nine out-of- town properties -- ranging from cabins to tent frames on platforms -- vandalized this summer.

Const. Jeff Cosgrove said most of the damage was minor and most of it was caused by youth. Rowan's may be an exception.

"There are aspects of that investigation which lead us to believe it's not youngsters involved," said Cosgrove.

Most of the incidents occurred within a week-long period at the beginning of August, and were committed by members the same small group of youth, Cosgrove said.

"It's not an indication that the entire youth of Cambridge Bay are on some kind of rampage."

The vandalism has not been confined to camps. Cosgrove said windows have been broken in the town's dental office, high school, Royal Bank and Nunavut Arctic College. Windows of a bulldozer were also smashed. Wilcox said the reward was one of a number of initiatives -- including hiring an extra bylaw officer, increasing the number of foot patrols and pleading with parents to take control of their children.