A man once designated a dangerous offender for repeated violent assaults on women was recently released from jail after being found not guilty of violating conditions of his release for smoking marijuana.
When Kevin Scott Miller was arrested in Chilliwack in September 2016 for violating the abstention-from-intoxicants condition on his long-term supervision order (LTSO) by purchasing marijuana from an illegal dispensary, he thought he had a legitimate prescription.
That was the finding of B.C. Supreme Court Justice Neill Brown, who further rejected the Crown’s assertion that the 48-year-old was attempting to smoke the marijuana to get high.
“I am left with a reasonable doubt he intended to consume an intoxicant or that he knowingly did so,” Justice Brown wrote in his decision recently released by the court.
Miller was in the news in August 2016 when it was revealed he was out of jail residing at the Chilliwack Community Correctional Centre (CCCC), a 31-bed federal facility on Rowat Avenue for offenders on statutory release or LTSOs.
There was some outrage when it was discovered Miller was at the CCCC, particularly when his proclivity for strangling women was revealed. That was also after he spent two years at large in the U.S.
Miller’s first serious conviction in the mid-1990s involved the rape a 14-year-old girl near Victoria after grabbing her in a van and wrapping a cord around her neck.
Two months after that, he violently strangled a 21-year-old woman he met at a bar downtown Victoria. Then, in 1996 during an altercation with a prostitute, Miller pulled a drawstring out of his jacket and strangled her with it until she passed out.
Twenty years ago a psychiatrist testified that, at the age of 28, Miller’s psychopathic score was in the 86th percentile.
While living at the Chilliwack halfway house, he was under strict conditions that included a 6 p.m. curfew and an ankle monitor when he was out. Miller faces numerous other conditions on his LTSO in addition to the abstention from intoxicants, including that he not be alone or in an isolated setting with any females; not to own, use or possess a computer; report all relationships with women to a parole officer; to address issues and emotional instability and anger management; and to participate in a sex offender program.
While at the CCCC, his parole officer testified Miller frequently talked about how to access medical marijuana. The officer testified that he told Miller using marijuana was not a good idea as it presented a risk to reoffend, and it was never approved.
“Officer Johnston confirmed more and more residents were asking for medical marihuana,” Justice Brown wrote. “He stated it was a challenging part of his work, as medical marihuana could be a gateway into other substances, and he thought its use a problem for some offenders.”
Johnston never saw the prescription that Miller presented to WeeMedical Dispensary just a few blocks away from the CCCC, a dispensary later shut down by the City of Chilliwack for operating illegally.
On Sept. 30, 2016, Miller was arrested after a high level of THC was detected in his urine. He remained in custody for considerable time, as he had no lawyer, finally applying to be released on bail, an application denied by Judge Richard Browning on Oct. 17.
At issue in his breach trial in B.C. Supreme Court in Chilliwack in November was whether Miller had a legitimate prescription for medical marijuana, and if the marijuana he sought was consumed as an intoxicant.
Miller had a prescription from a Dr. Farley from 2014 that he claimed was still valid, a prescription he never showed to his parole officer. Miller also argued that he sought low THC/high CBD marijuana, suggesting the marijuana was not for intoxication. He argued the marijuana was sought to help with his arthritis, depression and anxiety.
“I accept that at material times Mr. Miller had been seeking a prescription for marihuana for medicinal and not just for recreational purposes” Justice Brown wrote.
Miller was found not guilty, and while The Progress has not been able to confirm it, a source close to the file said he is still in Chilliwack back living at the CCCC.
Justice Brown stressed that his not-guilty verdict did not open the door to Miller to smoke marijuana, and the LTSO conditions are still in effect.