Sunday, April 14, 2013

Local News

The Terrible 12s 

The downtown business community is being terrorized — by a kid



owntown Chilliwack is under attack from a fleet-footed 12-year-old, and there’s nothing any one can do about it. Or so it seems.


For the last month, a 12-year-old boy of African descent, has been running rampant in Chilliwack stealing, trashing stores and generally causing trouble in places like the library and wherever his little legs carry him.


Because of the boy’s age, we’ll call him with by his initials; MD.


MD is being housed in a home on the north side of Chilliwack. Every day he goes AWOL running amok in the downtown area,


The police are diligent. Each time this little mayhem maker is on the loose, an alert is issued. In some cases, store owners get the warning first hand. Other times it’s too late and the damage is done. Eventually the kid is located and returned to the home. Some days the process is repeated multiple times.


Just last week, the pint-sized terror is a suspect in an incident where a small black kid matching MD’s description allegedly went into a diner on Wellington Ave, grabbed a customer’s laptop and flew out of the store with it. It’s not clear what happened to the laptop or the pre-teen track-star-in-training.


Again, because of his age, Chilliwack RCMP Cst. Tracy Wolbeck would only say that they have “been heavily involved” with MD.


Vicki Raw, Executive Director of the Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation told the Voice last week in an e-mail, that children with behaviour issues are referred to the Adolescent Day Treatment Program (ADTP) run out of the Abbotsford Regional Health Cancer Centre.


Rick Brown M.S.W., ADTP Clinical Coordinator, said in a follow-up e-mail that when people have concerns about children with behaviour problems they should call the Chilliwack Ministry of Family & Children Development who also work with Child and Youth Mental Health services.


“If they are unaware of (the) situation your phone call brings it to their attention,” said Brown. “They are also aware of the Child Youth Crisis Program and will involve if required.”


But until this youth gets the help he needs, the business community will be holding their breath when they see him coming.


Currently he is staying at Horizon House in Agassiz and staff there are required to report him as missing to police if he hasn't been seen in 2 hours.


Report concerns like neglect and child abuse to the Chilliwack MCFD at 604-702-2311.



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