UPDATE: Barker surrendered himself to the B.C. Sheriff’s Office in Victoria on Sept. 10 and has been arrested and detained. The story below is from Sept. 8 with a Sept. 9 update.
A man who was inadvertently released from the Vancouver Island Regional Correctional Centre is facing a charge of identity fraud, specifically personation with intent to gain advantage.
Grant Christopher Barker, 30, walked out of the Wilkinson Road jail on Sunday while awaiting trial on charges related to a domestic matter. While Saanich Police haven’t explicitly stated if Barker impersonated another inmate to escape, Sgt. Steve Eassie said there was another inmate scheduled for release that day.
In addition to identity fraud, Barker faces a new charge of escape lawful custody.
Eassie said police have received reported sightings of Barker’s whereabouts and believe he is still on the Island. Eassie noted Barker has resided in the Greater Victoria area for the past several years.
“We have received some possible sightings of him throughout the Victoria region. All of those have not netted any results as of yet,” said Eassie.
“It’s likely that he may still be in the Victoria area. We haven’t received any information to the contrary.”
He is not believed to be dangerous but police are still looking for him, currently checking his possible contacts in the community, Eassie said.
Barker is described as a First Nations male, five-foot-six, 180 pounds with black hair and some facial hair. Barker was last seen wearing a black zip-up hooded sweater, black shorts and black and white running shoes.
Anyone who sees Barker is asked to not approach him but to call police immediately. Anyone with information on Barker’s whereabouts is asked to call Saanich Police at 250-475-4321 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).