An owner of a Penticton pub using an imitation firearm to scare off people attempting a break and enter has RCMP reminding those reporting crimes in progress to not take the situation into their own hands.
Const. James Grandy said on Monday, July 9, around 2 a.m., the proprietor of Anthony’s Pub, located at 3502 Skaha Lake Rd., called 911 reporting several people had attempted to break into his building.
“While police were enroute, a witness also called 911 reporting a man waving around a hand-gun, in the same area. Upon police arriving, the proprietor of the pub was located nearby in the possession of, what was later confirmed, an airsoft handgun. The gun was subsequently seized by the officer,” said Grandy.
RCMP said the proprietor of the pub became frustrated with officers at the scene as he believed he was right in using an imitation firearm to scare intruders.
“It was explained at the scene to the owner of the pub that yielding an imitation firearm is not appropriate, and, in this case, took police away from investigating the original complaint,” said Grandy.
Grandy said police responding to high risk situations, such as a break and enter in progress, are often having to make split second decisions. He added when confronted with someone who appears to have a firearm on the street, police are justified in raising their response.
“The Penticton RCMP encourages people to report crimes in progress, but also to not put oneself in harms way allow officers to investigate,” said Grandy.
Airsoft pistols, such as the one seized in this matter, are made to look like real firearms, said Grandy. He added that using an imitation firearm in the commission of an offence carries the same penalty as using a real firearm.