Surrey masked robber loses appeal on strength of probation officers identifying him

Judge found the probation officers ‘had the appropriate degree of familiarity with the accused’

So much for wearing a mask.

Convicted robber Nathan Robert Wayne Field found out the hard way that concealing his face during a robbery wasn’t enough to get him off the hook. An unfortunate series of events, for him, sealed the deal.

He was convicted of robbery and having his face masked with intent to commit an indictable offence. Identification was the sole issue at his trial.

A clerk at the Surrey Central Inn was robbed by two masked men armed with a gun, on Nov. 20, 2014. Shortly after, there was an attempted carjacking. According to the Crown, the robbers arrived by taxi to the motel and attempted to jack a car to use in their get-away, but Field was acquitted of the carjacking.

“The trial judge was not satisfied that the identification in relation to the carjacking was sufficient to establish guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, and he acquitted Mr. Field of that charge,” Appeal Court Justice John Hunter noted in his reasons for judgment.

Police circulated photos taken from inside the taxi, though, and two probation officers who’d worked with Field subsequently recognized him.

Field appealed his conviction, but it was upheld. At trial his lawyer argued the photos were of poor quality but the judge found the probation officers “had the appropriate degree of familiarity with the accused,” Hunter noted.

“The trial judge considered the circumstances of the witnesses’ interactions with Mr. Field and, importantly, the time frame of those interactions, in concluding that their evidence would be helpful to him,”

Hunter said he was “unable to see any error in the way in which the trial judge weighed the recognition evidence” and dismissed the appeal.

Justices Robert Bauman and Mary Saunders concurred.

The case was heard in B.C.’s Court of Appeal in Vancouver.

READ ALSO: Person involved in Surrey crash must wait longer to get their blood back

READ ALSO: Man confessed to ‘Mr. Big’ that he killed his half-sister by suffocating her



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

Just Posted

City of White Rock hosts official pier reopening

Event included ribbon-cutting, speeches, live music

Surrey school district to allow students to miss class for global climate strike

Students must be excused from school by parents; will be able to make up missed work without penalty

Surrey rallies for change in global climate strike

Holland Park event part of marches around the world Sept. 20

Surrey RCMP need help to find missing man

Denis Godard, 64, who was reported missing on Sept. 19

Little library stolen in Clayton Heights

Thieves permanently check out family’s book collection

VIDEO: Grizzly bears fight along northern B.C. highway in rare footage

Cari McGillivray posted the head-turning video, shot near Stewart, B.C., to social media

Handgun crackdown, health spending and transit plans latest campaign promises

Friday was the end of a busy week on the campaign trail

B.C. woman photographs massive ant swarm on Abbotsford driveway

She asked what the ants were doing? The answer: war

Westbound crash on Highway 1 in Langley causing extreme traffic delays

Collision occured just after Glover Road, cars backed up all the way to 264th Street

Police arrest B.C. phone scammer linked to illegal call centres in India

Person arrested in Burnaby here on a work visa, says police

Air Canada forced girl, 12, to remove hijab: civil rights group

The San Francisco Bay Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations calling for change

Man from Winnipeg who was hiking alone found dead in Banff National Park

RCMP say the man was hiking alone on Mount Temple Thursday

Takaya, B.C.’s intriguing lone wolf, seen eating seal and howling away on Discovery Island

Fun facts about Takaya the wolf, like his a 36-hour tour around Chatham, Discovery Islands

Most Read

l -->