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Convicted B.C. sex offender Randall Hopley back in jail for 18 months

Randall Hopley back in jail

A Vancouver Provincial Court judge has sentenced the convicted child sex offender who went AWOL from his residence last year to a total of 29 months in prison.

Randall Peter Hopley, 58, pleaded guilty to two counts of breaching a long-term supervision order and failing to appear.

He disappeared from his Vancouver halfway house for 10 days in November 2023 resulting in what Judge Jennifer Oulton called significant media attention and an extensive police search.

With credit for time served awaiting sentenced, Hopley will be back behind bars for 18 months.

Oulton heard that Hopley failed to return to his Vancouver halfway house, the Salvation Army's Harbour Light facility, on Nov. 4. His electronic ankle monitoring bracelet was removed at Vancouver’s Main Street and East 8th Avenue. A Canada-wide warrant was issued.

Hopley turned himself in at a Vancouver Police Department (VPD) building in the Downtown Eastside shortly after 6 a.m. on Nov. 14. He said he had been sleeping under a bridge and was cold.

Hopley was given long-term sentence order in November 2018. Conditions included no contact with children under 16 and internet limitations.

Crown prosecutor Jacinta Lawton had asked for a four-year sentence while defence lawyer Bobby Movassaghi suggested two.

The maximum sentence is 10 years, Oulton said.

Oulton said long-term orders serve to protect the public and reintegrate offenders into the community.

But, she said, Hopley has cognitive and learning issues (his IQ is between 68 and 70 points with average intelligence scoring 85-114). Oulton said that has led to problems with Hopley receiving treatment.

She said his inability to deal with abstract issues has left him without empathy for his victims.

Aggravating the situation, Oulton said was that, when he went AWOL, he was subject to both the supervision order and on bail.

Broken down, the sentence is nine months for the first supervision order breach and 20 months for the breach where Hopley went missing. That 29 months is reduced by 11 months' credit for time in custody.

For failing to appear in court, she added a six-month sentence to be served concurrently.



The Crown stayed two other charges of breach of a long-term supervision order.

Outburst

As the judge discussed Hopley’s previous record of sex offending against children and cases that were not charged, he got agitated.

“I want to stop this,” he burst out. “There’s not three. There’s only two.”

A deputy sheriff and defence lawyer Tom Spettigue moved in quickly to calm Hopley before the judge continued.

Children’s story time

Hopley has had problems with two long-term supervision orders including suspensions.

A November 2022 case involved him going to the Vancouver Public Library's Marpole branch. He was being followed by an officer from the VPD’s high risk offender unit.

The constable saw Hopley enter the library and go directly to a computer terminal and begin using it, something he is barred from doing.

While on the computer, he was looking at ads and a website involving a 10-year-old boy.

However, the library was holding a children’s story hour at the time, meaning Hopley was in breach of a condition he stay away from children and not use devices to connect to the internet.

“Though he did not approach any child, he did not leave,” Oulton said in her sentencing decision.

Meanwhile, Hopley served six years for a 2011 abduction of a child in southeastern B.C. He abducted a three-year-old boy from his home in Sparwood and was released with conditions under a long-term supervision order. Hopley held the boy captive in a cabin for four days before returning him unharmed. 

He was arrested in January 2023 for allegedly breaching those conditions by visiting the Marpole library and was released on bail. 

In 2008, Hopley was convicted of breaking and entering into a home and removing a child from his foster family. He was also convicted of sexual assault of a five-year-old boy and assault of a woman in a parking lot, Lawton said.



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