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False report to Nanaimo RCMP coincidentally leads officers to wanted man

12-year-old in trouble nevertheless for making up story about knife assault
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A suspect and his ‘victim’ are both facing consequences after RCMP rushed to a fast-food restaurant in Nanaimo in response to a report of an assault involving a knife.

Police were called to the McDonald’s restaurant at the corner of Dufferin Crescent and Bowen Road at about 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 16, and detained three individuals.

“The call was for an assault with a knife by a shelterless individual at the McDonald’s on Bowen Road,” said reserve Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesperson. “Lots of members attended, but further investigation determined the allegation was falsely created.”

According to police, the call was made by a 12-year-old boy who allegedly reported he’d been assaulted by an individual, who appeared to be a marginalized person, carrying a knife. The falsehood was confirmed by investigators after viewing security camera footage.

While the allegation about the assault proved to be false, further investigation by the officers revealed that the 43-year-old man who was the target of the allegation actually had two outstanding warrants against him from Oceanside and the Comox Valley. He was subsequently released to appear in provincial court in Nanaimo on Tuesday, Nov. 21.

The other two people who were detained at the scene were released without charges.

Although the complainant did lead police to a wanted man, the boy still has the matter of answering for the prank call, said RCMP.

“Our school liaison unit is following up with the youth, the school and his parents to make sure that this behaviour is stopped and does not occur again,” O’Brien said. “We’re treating this as a school/family-based situation and we want to impress upon the youth the gravity of making improper decisions and the implications of such.”

READ ALSO: Suspects fail to get away with cellphone theft at A&W in Nanaimo



Chris Bush

About the Author: Chris Bush

As a photographer/reporter with the Nanaimo News Bulletin since 1998.
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