New Brunswick

Man charged with murder deemed 'significant threat' when released from psychiatric hospital

Jake Mischiek was described as a "significant threat to the public” by the New Brunswick Review Board in March when it decided to release him back into the community. Just over two months later he was charged with first-degree murder.

Jake Mischiek, 21, faces a first-degree murder charge in connection with Josh Daley’s death on May 21

Jake Mischiek, 21, faces a first-degree murder charge in connection with the May 21 shooting death of 27-year-old Josh Daley in Moncton. (Jake Mischiek/Facebook)

Jake Mischiek was described as a "significant threat to the public" by the New Brunswick Review Board in March when it decided to release him back into the community. 

The 21-year-old is charged in connection with the shooting death of Josh Daley, 27, in Moncton on May 21, just over two months after the board authorized his release from the province's psychiatric hospital.

During a court appearance last week, Crown prosecutor Annie St-Jacques requested Mischiek be sent for a 30-day assessment to determine whether he can be considered criminally responsible for his actions and whether he is fit to stand trial on the murder charge.

St-Jacques referred to the review board's decision but offered no further details. 

The 11-page decision, given to CBC News by the review board, says Mischiek was diagnosed with schizophrenia and substance use disorder. 

The board can issue or review conditions imposed on a person deemed unfit to stand trial or who is not criminally responsible on account of a mental disorder. Those conditions can include admission and treatment at the Restigouche Hospital Centre in Campbellton.

The Restigouche Hospital Centre in Campbellton is New Brunswick's psychiatric hospital. (Shane Fowler/CBC)

The March 10 decision says Mischiek's diagnosis led to him being deemed not criminally responsible for 2017 charges that included possessing a weapon contrary to a judge's order, possessing brass knuckles and failing to comply with a probation order. 

Mischiek was then admitted to the Restigouche Hospital Centre where he remained until September 2019. He was released on several conditions. However, he was readmitted on Jan. 22, 2020 after breaching a condition to not use drugs.

At a hearing in March, the three-panel board opted to release him back into the community again with several conditions. 

They included living with his mother or at a location approved by mental health workers, that he receive out-patient care at the Moncton Addiction and Mental Health Centre, to keep the peace, refrain from alcohol and drugs, and not possess firearms or prohibited weapons. 

Trouble follows meth use

The decision says Dr. Ralph Holly, a psychiatrist, testified during the board hearing that every time Mischiek uses methamphetamine, he "automatically gets into trouble."

Mischiek has goals for his life, but "under the influence of methamphetamine, the likelihood of him reoffending is high," the decision says.

Mischiek's treatment team at the hospital unanimously recommended his release. 

"If he makes the wrong choices, he now knows the consequences," the decision says. 

Oliver Sisk, a criminologist, recommended in a report that Mischiek would benefit from further hospitalization, according to the decision. The decision says programs would touch on psycho-education and skills training. 

"Unfortunately, the programs are not available at the moment but in the community, they would be more accessible," the decision states. It's not clear why the programs weren't available at the time.

Based on the testimony and reports presented during the hearing, "the New Brunswick Review Board came to the conclusion that Jake Christian Mischiek still poses a significant threat to the safety of the public, but if he is to be in a structured environment with services in the community that hospitalization is not necessary." 

Codiac Regional RCMP say they responded to a 911 call around 9:20 p.m. on May 21 for a report of shots fired in an apartment building in downtown Moncton. 

Members of the RCMP forensics team entering the scene of a shooting in downtown Moncton that took place May 21. (Shane Magee/CBC)

Daley was found "badly injured" inside the building and taken to hospital, where he died. 

Mischiek was arrested at a nearby residence a short while later, police said at the time.

Mischiek is set to return to court in Moncton on July 20, when a judge will consider the prosecutor's request for a mental health assessment. 

Mischiek's lawyer Annie Maltais had objected to the request, telling provincial court Judge Lucie Mathurin that she believes it is too early in the court process to send her client for an assessment.

Maltais declined to comment Monday.