John Streicker, minister of community services, and Dr. Brendan Hanley, Chief Medical Officer of Health, speak to media about the couple that flew to Beaver Creek for a vaccine during a COVID-19 press conference in Whitehorse on Jan. 27. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

John Streicker, minister of community services, and Dr. Brendan Hanley, Chief Medical Officer of Health, speak to media about the couple that flew to Beaver Creek for a vaccine during a COVID-19 press conference in Whitehorse on Jan. 27. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Court date set for couple in Beaver Creek vaccine incident

The couple are expected in Yukon on May 4

The Yukon government said it is in the process of bringing the couple, Rodney and Ekaterina Baker, who snuck into a vaccine clinic in Beaver Creek last week, to justice.

At a press conference on Jan. 27, Community Services Minister John Streicker said the Yukon government is pursuing the charges. He said the tickets originally handed out have stayed, and the same charges will be served to the couple so they can be compelled to attend court in Whitehorse. The RCMP is investigating.

The Civil Emergency Measures Act allows for fines and up to six months in jail.

“I’ve also spoken with and heard from many Yukoners who are angry about the situation, we share your feelings,” he said. “Let me tell you this, we are doing everything possible under our Yukon laws to hold these people accountable. The RCMP are also working on this matter.

“We’ve done the most that we can under the Act to make sure that we’re trying to address the situation. So the fines are there, but also once they are served, they will be required to attend court,” he said.

The couple has been designated a defence lawyer, who has accepted service on their behalf.

A court date has been set for May 4, according to the Canadian Press, but the documents will not be public until the information is delivered to the Bakers.

Meanwhile, First Nations organizations and residents of Beaver Creek and White River First Nation are calling for more than the $2,300 fine that was declared on the tickets they received at the Whitehorse airport on Jan. 21.

“They put our community, Elders, children, leadership, and vulnerable at risk all for selfish reasons,” wrote Teresa Vander Meer-Chassé, a member of WRFN who has started a petition calling for a “more just punishment” for the couple.

“Please support us by signing this petition and calling on Minister Streicker and the local RCMP to pursue a full investigation and a more just punishment. It is important that the penalty seriously discourages any future similar behaviour,” reads the petition.

So far it has received over 4,000 signatures. The petition uses the hashtags #JusticeForBeaverCreek and #JusticeForWRFN.

The Assembly of First Nations Yukon has echoed the calls for a harsher punishment.

“It’s not enough that Baker resigned. Baker and the Great Canadian Gaming Corporation have a moral debt to White River First Nation that needs to be repaid. Any type of reparations should be determined for and by the community,” said AFN Yukon Regional Chief Kluane Adamek.

The Bakers apparently entered the Yukon on Jan. 19, before chartering a plane to the community of Beaver Creek in order to sneak into the community vaccine clinic. They were fined and ticketed under CEMA for breaking self-isolation and disregarding their signed declaration.

The owner of the plane the couple chartered — Dave Sharp from Tintina Air — said like the vaccine clinic staff and residents of Beaver Creek, he was lied to by the couple and would never have knowingly transported the individuals or risked the safety of his pilot.

“We were misled along with everybody else. They deceived lots of other people,” he said.

The couple listed a downtown Vancouver condo on their official documentation when entering the territory, but divide their time between Toronto, northern Ontario and the coast, according to social media.

In British Columbia, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said that the couple will not be getting the second dose of the vaccine from them until they become eligible under the rules.

The second dose of the vaccine is supposed to be administered between 30 to 40 days after the first.

Contact Haley Ritchie at haley.ritchie@yukon-news.com

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Crystal Schick/Yukon News
Calvin Delwisch poses for a photo inside his DIY sauna at Marsh Lake on Feb. 18.
Yukoners turning up the heat with unique DIY sauna builds

Do-it-yourselfers say a sauna built with salvaged materials is a great winter project

d
Wyatt’s World

Wyatt’s World for March 5, 2021.

g
Yukonomist: School competition ramps up in the Yukon

It’s common to see an upstart automaker trying to grab share from… Continue reading

The Yukon government responded to a petition calling the SCAN Act “draconian” on Feb. 19. (Yukon News file)
Yukon government accuses SCAN petitioner of mischaracterizing her eviction

A response to the Jan. 7 petition was filed to court on Feb. 19

City councillor Samson Hartland in Whitehorse on Dec. 3, 2018. Hartland has announced his plans to run for mayor in the Oct. 21 municipal election. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Councillor sets sights on mayor’s chair

Hartland declares election plans

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley receives his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from Public Health Nurse Angie Bartelen at the Yukon Convention Centre Clinic in Whitehorse on March 3. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
State of emergency extended for another 90 days

“Now we’re in a situation where we see the finish line.”

The Yukon government says it is working towards finding a solution for Dawson area miners who may be impacted by City of Dawson plans and regulations. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Miner expresses frustration over town plan

Designation of claims changed to future planning

Team Yukon athletes wave flags at the 2012 Arctic Winter Games opening ceremony in Whitehorse. The 2022 event in Wood Buffalo, Alta., has been postponed indefinitely. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News file)
2022 Arctic Winter Games postponed indefinitely

Wood Buffalo, Alta., Host Society committed to rescheduling at a later date

Housing construction continues in the Whistle Bend subdivision in Whitehorse on Oct. 29, 2020. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Yukon Bureau of Statistics reports rising rents for Yukoners, falling revenues for businesses

The bureau has published several reports on the rental market and businesses affected by COVID-19

Council of Yukon First Nations grand chief Peter Johnston at the Yukon Forum in Whitehorse on Feb. 14, 2019. Johnston and Highways and Public Works Minister Richard Mostyn announced changes to the implementation of the Yukon First Nations Procurement Policy on March 3. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Third phase added to procurement policy implementation

Additional time added to prep for two provisions

Crews work to clear the South Klondike Highway after an avalanche earlier this week. (Submitted)
South Klondike Highway remains closed due to avalanches

Yukon Avalanche Association recommending backcountry recreators remain vigilant

RCMP Online Crime Reporting website in Whitehorse on March 5. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Whitehorse RCMP launch online crime reporting

Both a website and Whitehorse RCMP app are now available

A man walks passed the polling place sign at city hall in Whitehorse on Oct. 18, 2018. The City of Whitehorse is preparing for a pandemic-era election this October with a number of measures proposed to address COVID-19 restrictions. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
City gets set for Oct. 21 municipal election

Elections procedures bylaw comes forward

Most Read