OPP officer administers Naloxone, saves Barrie man

A Barrie man who almost died of a fentanyl overdose was saved by an OPP officer who was doing a routine check.

The officer was patrolling the parking lot at the ONroute off Highway 400 in Barrie on July 28, when she had cause to check a suspicious vehicle.

The licence plate check showed the owner of the vehicle, Cindy Bourgeon, 33, of Kitchener, had a warrant out for her arrest. The officer noticed that the man beside her, Nathan Marshal, 38, of Barrie was unresponsive.

Officers who assisted at the scene suspected a drug overdose from the opioid Fentanyl and gave the man a shot of Naloxone, a medication used to block the effects of opioids that has saved lives.

But the man only briefly revived, began to slur and then fell unconscious again. Police gave him a second dose while waiting for ambulance but Marshal still did not recover. He was taken to the Barrie hospital where he was given two further doses of the drug before he recovered.

A search of the vehicle turned up several hunting knives, a hatchet, a flick knife, a pellet gun, break and enter tools, digital scales and packets of cocaine hidden inside two false batteries.

Marshal and Bourgeon are charged with possession for the purpose of trafficking and possession of dangerous weapons.

Robber accidentally stabs himself

In the midst of a home invasion, a Barrie man accidentally stabbed himself, causing a serious injury to his hand.  

Brandon Bennet, who was charged with armed robbery and possession of a weapon, appeared in court Aug. 15.

Court heard the man was at a party in Barrie and left. Later he and his friends returned to the basement apartment, pushed the door open and ordered the victim to sit in a chair, where he was smacked in the head with a baseball cap several times. Various items were stolen including a laptop, cigarettes and beer from the refrigerator.

In the process, Bennet reportedly swung his knife and accidentally cut himself on the hand. He ordered the victim to help tend his hand then ordered him to drive him to the Barrie Public Library.

He exited the vehicle and a night security officer noticed his hand bleeding and called police. Police took him to RVH where he was treated, then arrested for armed robbery. He was released on bail but reportedly failed to abide by his 11 p.m. curfew and found himself back in jail Wednesday, Aug. 15 for breaching his bail conditions.

Attempted murder

A Barrie man charged with attempted murder is now on trial in Barrie court.

Dean Richer-Lebreton, 43, is on trial for stabbing a 26-year-old man who was rushed to hospital where he had two surgeries.

The trial is set for one week before a jury.

Cathy Keane — Oro-Medonte Ward 3

Our family moved to Oro-Medonte four years ago. We have an eight-year-old son attending W.R. Best Memorial Public School. My husband and I came to look at houses, and upon arriving in Oro-Medonte, we said, “This may not be the house, but this is definitely the area where we want to raise our son and retire.”

Before my husband’s work relocated us, I worked for the public as a veterinary technologist, veterinary laboratory technologist, and as co-ordinator of disease surveillance (Animal Health Division; Department of Natural Resources) with the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador for over 15 years. At the same time, I was a trainer for Transportation of Dangerous Goods.  My 15+ years experience working with various provincial/federal governments and agencies, law enforcement, universities, non-profit organizations and the private sector throughout Canada and around the world has given me knowledge and skills that I will bring and use to council. Serving the public was something I had great pride in doing and made every effort to assist anyone who contacted me since I felt I was working for the taxpayers, and not the government itself. I will carry this work ethic as councillor of Ward 3.  

While living in the city of Mount Pearl for 16 years, I (as a volunteer) and city councillor, led a drive resulting in the city creating its first dog park, changing methods of invoicing taxpayers for services, and adding more economical enhancements to the city.

Several concerns have been repeatedly raised and I will advocate those and others if elected:

-Need for affordable and reliable high-speed internet

-Roads: With the increasing growth of Oro-Medonte comes more traffic; aging roads need to be repaired, and replaced, and, signage and road safety in areas needs to be examined

— Tax increase is unwanted

-Need for more openness, communication and accountability with council. I will bring transparency and do my best to be available and always respectfully listen to all concerns that are brought forward. Being councillor of Ward 3 will be my full-time job.

Tom Guthrie — Penetanguishene councillor

Born and raised in Midland, I attended Midland Secondary School. Thirty-seven years ago I moved to Penetanguishene to get married and raise a family. I have three grown children and five grandchildren. I have worked in Manufacturing for 37 years and currently hold a lead hand position. Over the years I have been involved in contract negotiations and  currently sit on a pension and benefit committee.

The reason I am running in this upcoming election is that I would like to see a change with new direction and fresh ideas.  I believe we need to improve on the services we offer to the residents of Penetanguishene and prepare for the future. Some of the issues that I would like to work on if elected include:

Infrastructure: I would like to see additional funds put toward our road network. I would like to see a plan in place to see more funds allocated to resurface more roads that are not scheduled for major reconstruction in the next 15 to 20 years.

Affordable Housing:  I would like to see the town invest in housing for seniors and residents whose income doesn’t allow them to find alternative housing. Penetanguishene’s population is aging and people who live here may want to downsize from their current home to something more manageable but allow them to retain their independence.

Transit: I first off want to commend our current council for the implementation of the transit system. I would like to ensure that this program is a success and that we build on it for the future by reaching out to the ridership to find out where we can improve.

Parks and recreation: Address any safety concerns, adding new playground equipment to dated or under serviced parks.  Set aside funds for future ice rink.

These are some of the main reasons why I seek a position on council.

Tom Guthrie

RECALLS: Lean ground beef, barbecue lighters, more make this week’s list

Here is our weekly roundup of current product recalls. For more details on each, please click on the links. Don’t forget to check back next week for new items.


Butcher’s Blend is recalling certain recalled due to E. coli.

Certain Nanfang brand, Want Want brand and Chencun brand food products are recalled due to undeclared allergens. Healthy Canadians website/photo

Certain Nanfang brand, Want Want brand and Chencun brand that include black sesame paste, shake jelly and instant noodles are being recalled due to undeclared allergens.

Goodleaf brand Daikon Radish microgreens recalled due to Listeria. Healthy Canadians website/photo

Goodleaf Community Farms Ltd. is recalling Goodleaf brand due to Listeria monocytogenes. contamination. Consumers should not consume the recalled product.


Canadian Tire Corporation Limited recalls Master Chef BBQ Igniter lighters. Healthy Canadians website/photo

Canadian Tire Corporation Limited recalls Master Chef . The refillable lighters feature an adjustable flame height and are 285 mm long with a grey handle and black barrel. Health Canada’s sampling and evaluation program has determined that these lighters do not meet the Lighters Regulations in Canada and may pose a fire or burn hazard.

Home Hardware Stores Ltd. recalls Home Flexible Multi-Purpose Lighter. Healthy Canadians website/photo

Home Hardware Stores Ltd. recalls with a 5” flexible wand. Health Canada’s sampling and evaluation program has determined that these lighters do not meet the Lighters Regulations in Canada and may pose a fire or burn hazard.

ITW Canada recalls Red Head Trubolt+ wedge anchors that are used for concrete anchoring. Healthy Canadians website/photo

ITW Canada recalls that are used for concrete anchoring. The affected product does not meet the requirements for use in cracked concrete and seismic applications, which may lead to incidents or injuries to consumers.

Huish Outdoors recalls Oceanic and Hollis Scuba Diving Regulators. Healthy Canadians website/photo

Huish Outdoors recalls Oceanic and Hollis . The scuba diving regulators can restrict airflow at low tank pressures (below 500 psi), posing a drowning hazard to divers.

Elementary students in Oro-Medonte tackle global issues

The students at Shanty Bay Public School may be short in stature but they have big ideas for tackling the planet’s most pressing issues.

As part of a program called Change Agents, students were challenged to pick a United Nations Global Goal and develop a plan to affect change in that area.

Some of the student projects on display at a June 19 expo included, that was distributed to elementary schools throughout the county, a fundraising campaign to provide clean drinking water and plans to address food insecurity in the county.

Maeve Celli, a Grade 4 student, decided to do something about hard-to-recycle plastics. She noticed many plastic writing utensils at her school were making their way into garbage cans.

“It’s just so sad to see all the waste going into the garbage,” Celli said.

She collected more than 1,000 pieces of plastic from her school and will be diverting them to a recycling company called TerraCycle. After she gave a presentation to the school, she learned a Grade 1 student had started their own collection efforts, which she said was a great feeling.

“I didn’t know I could inspire people to do things like that,” she said.

Students were encouraged to combine their topic with their passions, so Grade 5 student Nari Hwang decided to “smoosh” her two loves together: art and the environment.

Her art abstract art piece titled “Make Clean Water Happen” to show the effects of plastic pollution in bodies of water.

After showcasing her piece, students at the school were asked to take pledges on preventing plastic pollution in bodies of water.

“I really like the water, it gives me peace,” Hwang said when asked why it was an important topic to her. “I just feel so calm when I’m in it.”

Across the gym, Grade 5 student Caden Fowler had created a colourful display about coral reefs around the world.

Reefs, he said, occupy less than one per cent of the ocean but are home to more than 25 per cent of marine life.  Another surprising fact he learned is that 35 per cent of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia has died off.

“It’s like an underwater rainforest,” Fowler said.

His project aims to educate people on how to prevent further damage to those underwater ecosystems.

Julie Johnson, a special education resource teacher at Shanty Bay Public School, organized the Change Agent program along with another teacher Heather Czarnota.

“They knocked it out of the park,” she said of the student projects.

The program is meant to help students develop collaboration, organizational, problem solving and empathy skills.

Johnson said they plan to continue the program, which received grants from the Ministry of Education and the Simcoe County District School Board for next year.

“This is really just the beginning for a lot of these projects,” she said.

What’s going on here in Creemore?

The should be complete by fall, after a new contractor was picked for the job in June.

Last September, Clearview Township council accepted a $193,000 bid from Consolidated to construct the Gowan Park pavilion, replacing a derelict building.

By late fall, however, construction stalled, and the second-lowest bidder, Cherokee Contracting, was called in this spring to fill in the hole left by the contractor.

The general manager of parks, culture and recreation, Terry Vachon, said he was unsure whether the municipality will be taking action against Consolidated.

At council’s June 25 meeting, councillors awarded the contract to build the pavilion to Cherokee at a price of $161,000, plus HST and a 10 per cent contingency, for a total of more than $200,000.

Cherokee had been paid just under $57,000 to bring the site up to grade, while Consolidated had been paid nearly $40,000 for the work that had been completed in the fall. Vachon noted the total cost of the project, including HST, will now be $296,000 — not including engineering and architectural fees.

Just the facts:

— The pavilion will be 75-by-25 feet, located on the north side of the park beside the ball diamond.

— Services will include washrooms, electricity, and a canteen area.

— Once it’s complete, the pavilion can be booked by calling Dan Gowan at the Creemore Arena,

Where to keep cool in New Tecumseth

As the heat wave continues, the Town of New Tecumseth will be keeping its facilities open as cooling centres, to allow residents who don’t have air conditioning to get out of the heat.

The cooling centres include the , the ., and all three library branches.

The branch locations are , and

The facilities will be open as cooling centres during normal hours of operation.

is now open, and the town also has four splash pads that are open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The splash pads are at , next to the next to the , and at the

For more information on the dangers and precautions of extreme heat, visit the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit website at or call Your Health Connection at (1-877-721-7520).

Have a sweet summer with Serve a Sweet Slice baking camp in Innisfil

baker Angelique Hardy is back in the kitchen this summer for another kids’ cooking camp.

“The was such a hit. I had so much wonderful feedback from it,” Hardy said.

This time, she’s extending the age group to 12.

“I will be showing the children how to grow your own food and how that connection can influence your choices,” she said. “It’s amazing when you see their eyes light up when they pluck their own lettuce and tomatoes. They want to create something awesome with it.”

The camps run July 2 through to the week of Aug. 6 from 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.

Cost is $39 a day, which includes two snacks, lunch and all materials.

For more details, call Hardy at or email .

Orillia councillors call for vulnerable-sector checks for Uber drivers

Drivers for ride-sharing services like Uber should undergo in-depth screening to protect Orillia’s vulnerable residents, such as children and the elderly, councillors say.

As the city eyes a proposal that would pave the way for Uber to operate here, a majority agreed drivers should be subject to the expanded background checks that are required of local cabbies.

“If my daughter went to the bar and got slightly tiddly and wanted to take a taxi home, I want to know she is safe,” Coun. Pat Hehn said.

Others disagreed on the need for vulnerable-sector checks, noting Uber has said it may steer clear of Orillia if drivers are subject to screening beyond the criminal-background checks it requires.

Manager of legislative services Shawn Crawford countered that equating the two screening checks was not “an apples-to-apples comparison,” as the vulnerable sector “identifies additional things that the criminal record doesn’t.”

These include pardons for sexual offences.

Currently, Orillia taxi drivers must undergo a vulnerable-sector check before they begin working, followed by annual criminal-background checks.

“At the core of licensing is public safety,” Crawford said.

Just one of 444 Ontario municipalities — Ottawa — requires Uber drivers to undergo vulnerable-sector screening, noted Coun. Mason Ainsworth.

Opening the market to Uber is about offering expanded choices, he added.

Derick Lehmann provided Uber services in Orillia before receiving a cease-and-desist order from the city.

Lehmann welcomed changes that would allow the company to operate locally, but disagreed with the requirement for vulnerable-sector checks, calling it “redundant.”

“Kids under 18 aren’t supposed to be in an Uber without their parent or guardian,” he said, adding seniors typically “aren’t using Uber.”

Completing a vulnerable-sector check can be a lengthy process and the requirement would discourage Uber from operating here, Lehmann said.

The proposed measure is part of a draft bylaw to regulate ride-sharing services, taxi companies and companies that provide rides in conjunction with other services.

It also recommends eliminating or reducing some requirements related to the taxi industry to provide it with greater flexibility to compete, Crawford said.

Council will consider a final bylaw in August.

Portrait of a Barrie opioid dealer: ‘Dispensing drugs like bullets.’

A disturbing glimpse into the ravages of the opioid crisis has been revealed through the sentencing report for a 21-year-old Barrie man who now faces seven years in prison.

In his June 20 submission, Justice Jonathan Bliss goes into great detail about the circumstances surrounding the fentanyl overdoses of five users in downtown Barrie Oct. 2, 2016, and how they led to the arrest of Tony Mastromatteo.

Mastromatteo was the supplier who laced cocaine with fentanyl and sold it to a street-level dealer who sold the drugs to five people in downtown Barrie that night.

All five later overdosed in the bar district with near-fatal consequences. If it wasn’t for police and paramedics administering the anti-opioid drug Naloxone, they could have died.

“Words fail to convey the human cost of the fentanyl crisis that communities across the country, and this community in particular, are facing. To put it bluntly, people are dying,” Justice Bliss wrote.

There were 74 confirmed and four probable opioid-related deaths in Simcoe Muskoka last year.

Mastromatteo showed disregard for the ruinous impact of his high-level dealing despite the fact both his parents died from opioid use, Justice Bliss said.

“He was essentially an illicit pharmacy dispensing drugs like bullets for the buyers to play Russian roulette with.”

Mastromatteo’s Facebook page showed him adorned in oversized rings, necklaces, with grill on his teeth, holding a wad of bills like a fan, with lyrics copied from The Game’s Gucci Everything:  “We got all the money, if y’all was looking for it.  My life is a movie, my Gucci imported.  I just do this shit for a hobby. Wearin’ all this jewelry exciting the federalies.”

“Mr. Mastromatteo wasn’t just posing as a gangsta, he acted like one.”

His cellphone, which contained hundreds of drug-dealing text messages and Facebook messenger chats, revealed the depth of his drug-dealing lifestyle to Barrie police.

Many of those messages were between Mastromatteo and the Chinese website he used to order his drugs which came to him in the mail via the United States.

“So easy was the process, and so confident was Mr. Mastromatteo in it, that he used his own name and his own address for the packages of drugs to be delivered,” the judge wrote.

Justice Bliss took Mastomatteo’s tragic upbringing into account, but said his prison sentence had to act as a deterrent to other drug dealers who profit from the opioid crisis.

“Dysfunction fails to convey the family life that he and his siblings were exposed to. It was marked by appalling parenting and tragic consequences,” he wrote.

When he was nine, Mastromatteo’s mother crashed her car while driving drunk, leaving his father a quadriplegic. 

When his mother got out of jail for the offence, she continued on a destructive path of drug use.

Mastromatteo was introduced to marijuana at age seven and was smoking it regularly by the time he was 12. By fourteen he progressed to crack cocaine and then moved, as a 16 year old, to opiates and heroin.