Winnipeggers are being warned to be extra vigilant as a high-risk sex offender who has preyed on children, especially girls, is being released back out into the public after completing a short prison term.
Leslie Wayne Oliver Mercredi, 32, also known as Leslie Wayne Brightnose or Leslie Mecredi, was released by Correctional Services Canada from the Headingley Correctional Centre on July 12, 2023, despite the risk he poses to children.
He had been serving a sentence of 6.5 months for breaching the conditions of his recognizance order.
In a statement provided to True North, Winnipeg Police Services Cst. Dani McKinnon said that he will continue to be monitored by authorities.
“We have a dedicated high-risk sex offender unit called the Manitoba Integrated High Risk Sex Offender Unit (MIHRSOU), this unit monitors such offenders and enforces court orders,” said Cst. McKinnon.
“Corrections Canada monitors parole, sentencing and releases back to the community along with the Province’s CNAC committee.”
The WPS press release also notes that Mercredi has a criminal record that includes sexual assault, sexual interference, assault, and possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose.
He has used threats, drugs, or other inducements to lure his underage victims.
Mercredi is bound by three court orders that limit his contact with children under 16, his employment and volunteer opportunities, his access to alcohol and drugs, and his possession of weapons.
He also has to abide by a daily curfew and be in regular contact with his probation officer.
MIHRSOU, a joint forces unit of the Winnipeg Police Service and the RCMP, issued a community notification on Thursday to alert the public of his release and the risk he poses.
The unit also said that while Mercredi participated in some treatment programs while in custody, he is still considered high risk to re-offend in a sexual manner.
Police are urging the public to exercise caution and immediately report any suspicious activity involving him to authorities.