Dawson City residents are responding “very favourably” to the news that a convicted rapist will not be moving to the Klondike.
“Things are pointing in the right direction now,” said Dawson City mayor John Steins on Monday morning.
“The community is still pretty cautious, we don’t want to count our chicks before they’re hatched,” said Steins.
“I guess he could still change his mind, but it’s highly unlikely.”
Thane Aubrey Moore changed his plans over the weekend after officials presented him with newspaper articles and a letter from Steins, said Yukon Justice spokesperson Chris Beacom reading from a prepared statement that the department received.
“Upon review of the information Mr. Moore decided not to relocate to Dawson.
“Further questions on this matter should be directed to the federal Corrections Service of Canada.”
The Corrections Service of Canada could not confirm that Moore changed his plans to locate to Dawson, said spokesperson Melanie Carkner.
It also would not say where Moore is moving, citing the national privacy act.
Moore has served a 14-year sentence in New Brunswick’s Dorchester Penitentiary for aggravated sexual assault, breach of probation and being unlawfully at large.
He is scheduled to be released on September 16, having served the complete sentence.
Moore had originally requested the court allow him to relocate to Whitehorse upon release.
His request was denied.
But in a hearing Thursday afternoon, a New Brunswick judge allowed Moore to move to Dawson City.
The decision inspired a massive backlash in the town of nearly 2,000.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen the community so fired up about an issue as this one,” Steins said on Thursday afternoon.
In 1993, Moore hitched a ride from a 21-year-old woman in Prince Edward Island.
He sexually assaulted her, punched, kicked and choked her into unconsciousness twice.
Her face was bruised and swollen, her eardrum was pierced and she required stitches to the corner of her mouth and her right ear.
She was hospitalized for five days.
Moore is at a high risk to offend both sexually and violently, according to a series of recent Parole Board of Canada decisions from June, July and August.
Dawson City still plans to hold a town meeting this evening at 7 p.m. at Robert Service School.
“We’ve been wanting to have a public meeting for a long time now anyway and we’re set up to have one tonight so we might as well go ahead,” said Steins.
“We can relax a little bit and maybe people can ask about other issues things that are bothering them.”
Justice department officials will not attend the public meeting.
With files from Chris Oke.