Attempted murder suspect in CK released under house arrest

The sign outside courtroom 103 at the Chatham-Kent Courthouse (Photo by Jake Kislinsky)

A Chatham-Kent man accused of attempting to murder a Chatham-Kent police officer will finally be released on bail for compassionate reasons.

Larry VanBraeckel, 28, of Chatham Township had his bail hearing on Tuesday and will be released from custody, likely on Wednesday, on $6,000 bail. An ankle monitor will be installed and he will be under house arrest. VanBraeckel has been in custody at the Windsor jail for nearly five months.

The court has ordered VanBraeckel to reside at his father’s house in Wallaceburg at all times, unless he’s in the company of his two sureties or if it’s an emergency related to his father, who is in the late stages of cancer and is receiving end of life care. He’s also ordered not to have any contact with several co-accused from other previous¬† outstanding charges and to not to possess any weapons.

One of his sureties is a long time friend from Windsor, who will move to Wallaceburg, while the other is the mother of his two small children. They both promised the court to keep a close eye on VanBraeckel, who said he wants to turn around his life and become a better father.

Other bail plans were previously denied because they were deemed by the court to be unacceptable.

On Tuesday, the court heard that VanBraeckel has a lengthy criminal record, including for offences related to drugs, weapons, and failing to attend court for other previous charges. The court was also told that VanBraeckel is a drug user.

The prosecution was against the sureties, saying they are not suitable, but agreed that VanBraeckel should be given a chance to say goodbye to his dying father.

VanBraeckel is currently facing more than a dozen charges after he allegedly tried to hit a police officer with a vehicle on Pain Court Line in Dover Township on September 7, 2022 during a Back-to-School safety campaign.

Police previously reported the driver of a grey Mazda was speeding in the area and allegedly tried to hit the officer when officers directed the driver to pull over.

Investigators said the officer was able to avoid being struck and the driver fled the scene after other officers tried to stop the vehicle. The vehicle was stopped a short time later on Irwin Street in Chatham and the driver was arrested, according to police.

Police also said at the time the man was wanted on several warrants and was bound by several prohibitions and conditions, including a ban on driving. According to police, officers also found a replica handgun on him, which was also a violation of his release conditions.

VanBraeckel is charged with the attempted murder of a police officer, assaulting a police officer, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, flight from police, failing to remain at the scene of a collision, mischief, driving while prohibited, and failing to comply with a release order. He was also charged with two counts of possession of a firearm contrary to a prohibition order and five highway traffic act offences.

VanBraeckel will return to Chatham court in person on March 9, 2023.