Monday, December 9, 2013



Six damaged police vehicles sit at RCMP detachment in Burnaby, B.C., on Dec. 8, 2013. They were allegedly damaged by a man driving a stolen truck.
Arlen Redeko / Postmedia News Six damaged police vehicles sit at RCMP detachment in Burnaby, B.C., on Dec. 8, 2013. They were allegedly damaged by a man driving a stolen truck.
RCMP in Burnaby, B.C., remained puzzled Sunday by an early morning crime spree that saw at least one local emergency room flooded and a parking lot of police cruisers destroyed by a stolen cube van.

At 1 a.m. Sunday, witnesses reported a Jeep Cherokee crashed into an RCMP car parked outside a community policing outpost beside a shopping centre.
Police say the 38-year-old suspect climbed out of the totalled Jeep and somehow managed to commandeer a nearby cube van, using it to further destroy parked cruisers in the lot.

As he attempted to manoeuvre the five-tonne truck out of the lot, the suspect had allegedly drove  “into or over” five marked RCMP cars, one unmarked car and one vehicle used for community crime watch — rending at least half irreparable, Staff Sgt. Major John A. Buis said.
It’s destruction of taxpayer dollars
“I hate to characterize it as a demolition derby,” he said, “Because it’s destruction of taxpayer dollars. But it looked like it.”

After arresting the man without incident, officers took him to Burnaby General Hospital for a physical and psychological evaluation, out of “concern for his wellbeing,” Staff Sgt. Major Buis said. Once in an examining room, the suspect allegedly jumped up on his bed and ripped out a sprinkler head from the ceiling — flooding the surrounding area and forcing hospital staff to evacuate the emergency room.

Mr. Buis said the suspect was not restrained so he could be properly assessed.
“In my 37 years in the RCMP, I’ve never seen anything like this,” Staff Sgt. Major Buis said of the ordeal.

Photos of the parking lot crossed the veteran officer’s desk on Sunday looked like “a disaster zone,” but investigators have yet to report a motive for the spree.
Drugs, alcohol or psychological factors have not been ruled out.

Ric Ernst / Postmedia News file
Ric Ernst / Postmedia News file The exterior of Burnaby General Hospital in Burnaby, B.C. in 2011.

The suspect, from neighbouring Surrey, B.C., was known to police, but had no previous altercations with the Burnaby detachment that might  explain such action, police said.

As the investigation progressed Sunday, police learned of another incident at a nearby hospital that is believed could be linked to the crime spree.

The Jeep found at the crash site was stolen on Saturday in Surrey, where officials at Fraser Health Facility reported that a man became agitated and tore out a sprinkler head, causing an “undetermined amount of damage to the building and its contents.”

While police said the suspect at the Surrey hospital also drove a Jeep Cherokee and matched the description of the man accused of damaging police cars in Burnaby, the link between the Surrey and Burnaby incidents has not been officially confirmed.
The suspect was remanded into RCMP custody on Sunday, but has not been officially charged. RCMP will not release the suspect’s identity until charges are laid.

National Post

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