By Cal Braid
Sunny South News
A Picture Butte man is in police custody after a crime spree that ran through Raymond over the course of two weeks in late July. The spree appears to be the latest in a pattern of crime and police evasion that stretches back to at least 2020 for the accused.
Detachment Commander for the Raymond and Magrath Detachment, Sgt. Kevin Wright, RCMP, gave a quarterly update before Raymond town council on July 26 and updated council on the arrest, saying “This (guy) who’s been around, in the two weeks he’s been here has created about 20 files for us. We got him yesterday with a police dog, so he’s been remanded on 44 charges on eight arrest warrants. Hopefully (he’s) out of our hair for a little while. Some residents may have got to him first, but that’s another story for another time.”
According to an RCMP media release, on July 25, 2022, shortly before 4 p.m., Raymond RCMP received multiple calls regarding a male attempting to break into a residence on Township Road 640 and Range Road 205 near Raymond. It was reported that the male suspect was the same suspect who had stolen vehicles on July 20 and July 21, 2022, from the same area.
The male suspect gained entry to a private residence, stole keys to a pickup truck, and fled the area in the truck. Cardston RCMP located the suspect, however, he evaded police and drove into the City of Lethbridge.
The Raymond detachment collaborated with the Coaldale RCMP, Alberta RCMP Police Dog Service, and Lethbridge Police Service, and found the suspect hiding in a private residence that he had broken into. He was arrested and taken into custody.
The charges confirm that the crimes were serious in nature and a serious disturbance throughout several municipalities. Travis Taylor, 31, a resident of Picture Butte, has been charged with the following offences: Assault and assault with a weapon, mischief resulting in over $5,000 damage, break and enter to commit both theft and mischief, flight from police, resisting arrest, two counts of failure to comply with conditions of an Undertaking. He was additionally charged with possession of stolen property over $5,000, break-in instruments, and a controlled substance.
The release also stated that Taylor was also arrested on eight warrants with 32 outstanding charges from Raymond RCMP and Lethbridge Police Service. Following a judicial interim release hearing, Taylor was remanded into custody awaiting his first court appearance.
Sunny South News (SSN) found that in the spring of 2022, a man named Travis Taylor was charged with possession for the purpose of trafficking, possession of stolen property, possession of stolen property obtained by crime, careless use/storage of a firearm, unauthorized possession of a firearm, and two counts of breach of undertaking.
According to a media release issued by Lethbridge Police Services in February 2022, Taylor was released after a judicial interim release hearing with a scheduled court appearance on March 30, 2022.
At that time, police seized drugs with a combined street value of over $3,000 including 34 grams of meth and 2.2 grams of psilocybin from Taylor and two other individuals.
Three firearms, ammunition, $1,900 in cash as proceeds of crime, and stolen property including a motorcycle and another vehicle were also seized at the time. A warrant was issued when Taylor did not attend court and it is not known if he has been at large since that arrest.
SSN also found another report involving a man with that same name that led to criminal charges.
“Lawyers confirmed (…) that the accused, Travis Robert Taylor, and Travis Roy Priest, will stand trial May 18-19 and July 12 (2021) in relation to a break-in at Honkers Pub and Eatery Nov. 29. 2020. On that day a small truck was driven through the front window of the north side business, and two men then stole an ATM from inside the business and drove away,” as previously reported by the Lethbridge Herald on March 18, 2021.
An RCMP media relations officer would not confirm whether the incidents are related and if the suspect involved in the Raymond spree is the same individual as the man named in the other reports.
“We have to be very careful about personal rights.”