Vernon North Okanagan RCMP used a spikebelt to stop a suspect in a stolen van Nov. 29. (RCMP file photo)

Spikebelt stops Spallumcheen suspect in police chase

40-year-old Vernon man facing charges

After evading police not once, but twice, a Vernon man was stopped in his tracks Monday night in Spallumcheen.

A stolen minivan was spotted travelling southbound on Highway 97A near the Lansdowne Road intersection Nov. 29.

A Vernon North Okanagan RCMP officer attempted to conduct a traffic stop with the vehicle at approximately 9:45 p.m., but the driver sped off.

Shortly afterwards, the vehicle was spotted on Highway 97 near St Anne’s Road by a different officer. Police attempted a second traffic stop with the vehicle, which made a U-turn and fled once again at a high rate of speed toward Vernon.

Additional responding officers set up and deployed a spike belt on Highway 97 near the intersection of Meadowlark Road, successfully puncturing two wheels of the van. Once the vehicle came to a stop, police took the driver into custody without incident.

“The suspect, having failed to stop twice for police, was clearly motivated to avoid arrest,” Cpl. Eric Beaulieu said. “Our frontline officers did an excellent job prioritizing the safety of the public throughout this incident and their co-ordinated and timely response resulted in the safe conclusion and successful apprehension of the suspect.”

The driver and lone occupant, a 40-year-old Vernon man, remains in custody.

Investigators determined that the man was bound by a release order, with a condition which stipulated that he must not be found behind the steering wheel of any motor vehicle without the owner present.

Therefore he now faces a number of new potential charges under the Criminal Code and BC Motor Vehicle Act.

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READ MORE: Impaired drivers keep North Okanagan RCMP busy


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