A Vancouver provincial court judge has sentenced a man who has pleaded guilty to 11 gun charges and other counts in North Vancouver, Burnaby, Toronto and Oshawa to six years in prison.
Crown prosecutor Jonas Dow told Judge Laura Bakan in February that Travis Ramsey Bell has a “relentless” desire to possess guns.
Bell came before the court with an “enormous” record of more than 70 convictions for crimes of violence and gun possession, Dow said earlier.
With credit for time served, Bakan said Bell has 3.5 years left to serve on the charges to which he pleaded guilty.
Bakan said Bell had a “chaotic, dangerous upbringing with abuse, self-harm and violence.”
But, she noted, Bell did not seek to blame his background his for crimes. Rather, she said, he wants to be accountable for his behaviour and move on from the criminal lifestyle and be a responsible father for his children.
Before sentencing was passed, Bell addressed the court.
“I realize I made a lot of self-destructive and selfish decisions,” he said. “I didn’t think about the hardship I was causing my loved ones.”
He said he wants to try and better himself.
“I’m tired of getting shot,” he said. “I’m tired of getting stabbed.”
“I don’t want to die,” he said. “I just want to be there for my kids.”
The oldest of the current charges date back to 2019 when Toronto police saw Bell in the company of two other men, one of whom was known to be violating parole.
When the police moved to arrest the man, they saw Bell remove a handgun from his waistband to discard it. The 45-calibre was found with a bullet in the chamber.
“It reflects an intention to arm yourself and be prepared to shoot somebody,” Dow said.
That led to four charges of possession of a firearm contrary to an order, possession of a restricted firearm and possession of a loaded firearm.
On Dec. 26, 2020, Dow said, Oshawa, Ont. police saw Dow in a vehicle. A person was sitting in their living room when Bell crashed through their building wall after driving at high speed.
That led to charges of dangerous operation of a conveyance and mischief endangering life.
On March 21, 2021, Whistler RCMP did a traffic stop of a car with Ontario plates. Bell identified himself and took off running, escaping from police.
Inside the car, police found a bag containing a loaded 40-calibre handgun. DNA and fingerprints connected the gun to Bell, as well as his proximity to it in the car. That led to charges of possession of a firearm contrary to an order and possession of a loaded, restricted firearm.
And, on March 29, residents of a 29th-floor apartment in Burnaby were at home when Bell appeared on their balcony. He had leapt from next door, claiming a kidnapping was underway.
He was chased down and arrested.
On a floor below the apartment, police found another handgun. Officers connected the gun to Bell because they found his phone in the apartment he had leapt from.
“It matched the photos of the handgun that Mr. Bell was taking selfies of,” Dow said.
That led to a charge of possession of a firearm without licence or registration.