Centennial Square cordoned off as man re-occupies tree

Victoria police cordoned off the west side of Centennial Square in response to a man who set up a hammock in a tree 10 metres above ground Friday.

The man identified himself as Lyle Barrette, 50. He was convicted of assault in 2012 after throwing urine at a city worker who tried to remove his bicycle from a tree in the square in 2011 as part of the Occupy protests.

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At one point, Friday evening, police considered using a ladder from a Victoria Fire Department truck to negotiate with the man, but responders decided to stand down.

Friday evening, Barette dangled a copy of his book Se> Inner Energi from one of the branches. He also damaged branches in setting up his haven.

“Right now, we’re going to do nothing,” said an officer at the scene. Police removed a large laundry bag of his possessions and a drum to prevent theft while he is ensconced.

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