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Cobourg police say missing man Rodney Starke wanted on Canada-wide warrant

OPP ROPE Squad says wanted man Rodney Starke may be in Cobourg or Brighton
Rodney Starke, 58, was released from Warkworth Institution on Monday but failed to show up in Toronto. Police say he violated his release conditions.

What started as a missing persons case in Cobourg now has larger implications after it was revealed a man reported missing last week was recently released from Warkworth Institution.

On July 22, Cobourg Police Service reported Rodney Starke, 58, was missing and said there was “concern for his well-being.”

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At the time, the news release made no mention of Starke’s criminal history.

According to Today’s Northumberland, Starke was released after serving a 17-year sentence for violently assaulting a woman, along with forcible confinement, assault with a weapon and trafficking narotic. The report says it was his second sentence after serving another one for sexually assaulting and stabbing a woman on the pretext of buying a vehicle.

Starke is now in breach of his 10-year supervision order and a warrant for his arrest has now been issued by the Correctional Service of Canada Edmonton Supervision Unit, police said on Thursday. The case is being reviewed by the Repeat Offender Parole Enforcement Squad.

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Starke was last seen in the area of the Midtown Mall at 500 Division St. in Cobourg around 8:30 a.m. on July 22, according to police.

He is approximately 190 pounds, six feet tall and bald. He was last seen wearing a white T-shirt and dark-coloured shorts. He may also be seen carrying a large duffle bag along with two boxes.

The ROPE squad on Thursday said he has several tattoos including a wizard tattoo on his left shoulder, a bird tattoo on his left ankle, and Chinese writing and a cat head on his back.

He is known to frequent Cobourg and Brighton.

“The safety of the public is top priority to all police services and if the Cobourg Police Service was advised that there was a threat to our community, we would have provided that information right away,” police stated Thursday.

“We can confirm that the individual was released from our custody on Monday on a Long term supervision order (LTSO), following the completion of his sentence,” said Laura Prosser, a spokesperson for Correctional Service of Canada. “We are aware of the public’s concern around this situation and want to reassure them that the safety of the public is paramount for us and we are working hard with our police partners to bring this individual back into custody.”

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Anyone having contact with Starke or information in regards to his whereabouts is asked to contact the ROPE squad at 416-808-5900 or toll free at 1-866-870-7673 (ROPE) or Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or call 911.

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