After a 10-hour police standoff in a Kelowna neighbourhood, a search warrant was secured and the specialized Emergency Response Team (ERT) was able to enter the home and arrest the final person, who had held out all day.
The police incident began when a Kelowna RCMP Officer noticed a white Ford Escape parked on Cactus Road that matched the description of a vehicle that was previously deemed suspicious.
Two people drove the Ford Escape to a gas station, without realizing that they were being followed by police. Once stopped at the pumps, the mountie attempted to approach the vehicle.
The vehicle then sped off down a busy road while swerving in and out of oncoming traffic. Police did not pursue due to public safety.
Another officer in the area found firearms and ammunition on the side of the road, and it is believed that it was thrown out of the window of the Ford during their attempt to flee police.
The vehicle returned to Cactus Road, and the occupants escaped into the house at 1075 Cactus Road in Rutland, an address that is familiar to the RCMP.
Neighbours spoke to Capital News during the standoff and said that police are often seen at the residence. One person who lives in the area said that he has seen people around the house with guns and has called the police on more than one occasion.
After running a background check, police realized that the occupants of the house had a history with law enforcement, and were potentially dangerous. The police dog service and the ERT were deployed to surround the house at approximately 10 a.m.
Other residents of the area were asked to shelter in place and if they had to leave, they were not permitted to return until the incident ended.
While waiting for a warrant to search the home, ERT members used a megaphone throughout the day to communicate with the occupants of the house and encourage them to leave. They also deployed flash-bang grenades. Officers with sniper rifles were stationed around the house with guns pointed at the basement.
Della-Paolera said that throughout the day, all but one person exited the home.
The ERT’s application for a search warrant, which allows them to enter the home, was approved at approximately 8 p.m.
The final suspect was arrested at approximately 8:30 p.m.
In total seven people were arrested from the house.
During the standoff, a man who lives two doors down was upset that police were around his house, said Della-Paolera.
He proceeded to threaten the police. A background search was done on the man and police realized that he had warrants out for his arrest. The man was taken into custody.
“It was an interesting day,” said Della-Paolera.
Della-Paolera said that the ERT is an amazing asset and their skills and ability to work alongside the RCMP are appreciated.
Both police incidents are still being investigated.