Update on Police Incident – November 18th, 2022

Post copied from Kootenay Scoop Facebook Page

Meadow Creek BC Man charged with a number of Criminal Code Offences after RCMP, Kaslo Fire Department, Ministry of Environment HAZMAT recovery crew & Kaslo Leadership required at local incident

RCMP RELEASE KASLO BC – In the early morning hours of November 18th, 2022. Members of the Kaslo RCMP detachment were dispatched to a report of Mischief in the Community of Kaslo. A local couple reported observing a figure on a surveillance camera pouring a substance from a jerry can into vehicles parked in their driveway. The suspect appeared to be wearing a respirator and HAZMAT suit in the surveillance footage.

Evidence at scene led officers to other evidence in a nearby field and wooded area. Further investigation and evidence revealed the strong likelihood the suspect had combined two precursor chemicals on scene that when combined created a dangerous and hazardous gas.

The investigation rapidly expanded. A suspect was identified and further surveillance footage of a male purchasing the precursor chemicals at a store in a nearby community were obtained. This male is also on conditions to not have contact with the victims after being convicted for assaulting one of them earlier this year.

Kaslo RCMP formed a partnership with Kaslo Community Leadership, Kaslo Fire department, Ministry of Environment and a Contracted Chemist. After consultation, a plan was formulated to mitigate the immediate risk to the public by removing the vehicles involved from the community to a safe location to be dealt with by a properly trained HAZMAT recovery Team.

Kaslo RCMP officers continued the Criminal Code investigation by obtaining Search Warrants for a Residence, Outbuildings and a Vehicle that they believed would afford further evidence of the offences.

A plan was formulated to safely take the suspect into custody. On November 21, 2022 at approximately 5:00 p.m. Members of the South East District (SED) Emergency Response Team (ERT) and The SED Containment Team executed the warrants at a Property in Meadow Creek, B.C. The suspect attempted to flee and after deploying a spike belt to disable his vehicle his attempts continued on foot for another 3 hours.

The suspect was taken into custody without further incident and transported to Nelson, B.C. for further processing.

A search of his residence led to further offence related property listed in the Search Warrant. Officers also seized several weapons including a loaded semi auto hand gun and a loaded rifle.

Benjamin John VELT of Meadow Creek, B.C has been charged with a number of Criminal Code Offences

VELT is scheduled to next appear in Provincial Court on November 29, 2022

Harland Venema (Corporal)

NCO i/c Kaslo Detachment RCMP

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