Kelowna RCMP file photo. Image credit: Carmen Weld

Kelowna RCMP file photo. Image credit: Carmen Weld

West Kelowna man restrains alleged car thief prior to RCMP arrival

The alleged car thief was arrested and will appear in court Monday

A West Kelowna man restrained an alleged car thief after he saw a woman in the cab of his pickup truck that was parked outside his home on Butt Road early Monday morning.

On Jan. 28 at 6:29 a.m., RCMP received a report of a theft of pickup truck in progress outside a home located in the 2400 block of Butt Road in West Kelowna.

Police were updated that the registered owner of the black GMC 1500 pickup truck was actively restraining a suspect, who had allegedly entered the idling truck and attempted to reverse out of the man’s gated driveway. Officers responded to the scene and assumed custody of the woman, who was later positively identified by police.

Further investigation revealed that the woman was prohibited from driving a motor vehicle and subject to a Probation Order, under strict conditions imposed by the courts to keep the peace and be of good behaviour, and not to possess any personal identification or identity documents belonging to others.

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A search of the suspect conducted by police, incidental to the woman’s arrest, yielded used needles, a pocket knife, b.b. gun pellets along with compressed air cartridges and a B.C. identification card in another person’s name. A bicycle located near the scene was also seized by police, who determined it had been stolen a number of years ago from Kelowna.

“Ice on the home owner’s driveway caused the vehicle to spin out, and likely played a role in preventing the suspect from fleeing,” said Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey. “It is fortunate that the vehicle owner didn’t sustain any injuries during his interaction with the suspect, who allegedly made attempts to strike him in order to escape.”

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“Although the RCMP commend the man for apprehending the woman, police would like to caution the public from placing themselves at unnecessary risk. In this particular case, the suspect had a number of items in her possession that could have caused serious harm, or had life altering implications.”

RCMP are also encouraging owners to take steps to prevent similar thefts from occurring.

“We recommend that owners remain with their vehicle while it’s warming up, or ensure that a proper immobilizer or anti-theft device is installed,” said O’Donaghey.

The 21-year-old Kelowna woman now faces a number of potential criminal charges. She was held in police custody and is expected to appear in court on Monday.

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