Update: 3:18 p.m.
A two vehicle collision, in a busy Kelowna intersection, triggered a search for a heavily damaged suspect vehicle that reportedly failed to remain at the scene of the crash.
Just after 12 noon Thursday, a general duty officer came across a collision that appeared to have just occurred, which left a blue Honda Pilot SUV disabled in the intersection and partially blocking the westbound lanes of Highway 97 at Dilworth Drive. The officer assessed the lone occupant of the SUV for any injuries and quickly learned that a second vehicle, involved in the crash, had fled south towards Springfield Road.
The driver of the Honda Pilot, a 38-year-old Kelowna woman, who sustained non-life threatening injuries in the crash, was assessed medically and released at the scene by paramedics with BC Ambulance Service.
Several officers flooded the area in search of the suspect vehicle, which had been described as a grey Mazda MPV minivan.
“Suspicious vehicle reports poured in to police from the public and motorists provided police with sightings of the suspect vehicle, which had sustained significant front end damage and was seen smoking from under the hood,” stated Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey.
The Kelowna RCMP Air Services Section was engaged and the helicopter responded to the area to assist in the search.
“In the end, it was ultimately another general duty officer who spotted the vehicle in the vicinity of the east end of Lawrence Avenue,” adds Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey.
A 45-year-old Kelowna man, well known to the RCMP, was arrested. He remains in police custody at this time and faces several potential charges.
Further investigation revealed that the grey Mazda MPV minivan had been reported to RCMP in Kelowna as stolen on Jan. 3 from a location in the 2400 block of Highway 97. The vehicle had reportedly been left idling and unattended momentarily when it was taken.
The stolen vehicle has been seized by investigators and remains part of the still ongoing investigation.
If you witnessed this incident and have not yet spoken to police you are asked to contact Cst. Carl Stene of the Kelowna RCMP at 250-762-3300.
At least one person suffered minor injuries in an accident on Highway 97 and Dilworth Thursday afternoon.
A mini-van appears to have hit a light standard at the intersection.
Police were called to the scene after reports that it was a possible hit and run while ambulance was also called to treat injuries suffered. The Kelowna Fire Department was also on scene.
Traffic was being blocked on Dilworth while the accident was being investigated.
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