A runaway prolific offender in a stolen vehicle led Vancouver Island RCMP officers on a three-hour chase through the bush before being captured and arrested last week.
On Thursday, Dec. 28, Oceanside RCMP spotted a stolen vehicle on Claymore Road West in Qualicum Beach at about 11 p.m.
The vehicle had been reported stolen out of the Comox Valley area, according to a release from the RCMP Island District.
The driver of the vehicle, a 29-year-old male, refused to stop and RCMP members followed tracks in the snow until the vehicle was found further up the road in the ditch.
Several weapons were found in the vehicle, according to police.
“Two people were in the vehicle, police commands were given and the passenger complied while the driver refused and fled into the bush on foot,” Cpl. Tammy Douglas said in the news release.
A police dog team was brought to the scene and completed a “dangerous track” lasting three-and-a-half hours through snow, slush, water, fallen trees and rivers before eventually locating the suspect, who was hiding on the riverbank.
He refused to follow police instructions and attempted to run once again, according to the Oceanside RCMP.
“The Police Service Dog was deployed and apprehended the suspect who then pulled the dog into the river attempting to drown it,” the release stated.
Police then used a conducted energy weapon (Taser) on the man, causing him to release the dog. The man was then taken into custody.
The suspect, who has several outstanding warrants out of Port Alberni, is facing several charges in this incident, including possession of property obtained by crime, possession of break-in tools, failure to stop for police and failure to comply with probation order.
The passenger in the stolen vehicle, a 32-year-old male, is facing charges of possession of property obtained by crime and possession of break-in tools.