News

Mayhem follows suspected pressure-washer scammer

A handcuffed man who ran away from security officers at Wal-Mart in Saanich was picked up during a break-and-enter by Nanaimo RCMP last month.

On July 12, security at the Uptown store witnessed the suspect take a vacuum cleaner off the shelf and bring it to the return desk to receive funds.

After completing a successful transaction, he was picked up by a security officer outside the store. He surrendered his wallet, including identification, and was handcuffed, but threatened to assault the officer so he was allowed to flee – still in handcuffs.

His identification was turned over to Saanich police. "This gentleman is well known to our officers. He was recognized by investigating officers immediately," said Sgt. Dean Jantzen.

On July 14, Nanaimo RCMP were alerted by a homeowner on Westwood Road about a break and enter in his home.

RCMP officers arrived with a canine unit, but were unsuccessful in locating a suspect. While still on the scene, an unknown vehicle arrived, and when mounties attempted to question the driver, he ran.

The canine unit was able to successfully locate the man, as well as some stolen items from the Westwood Road home.

Kevin Thomas Gordon, 37, faces charges of possession of stolen property and obstructing a police officer in Nanaimo.

He was charged by Saanich police with theft under $5,000, fraud under $5,000 and escape from lawful custody for the incident at Wal-Mart. When picked up by Nanaimo RCMP, he had a warrant out for his arrest from Oak Bay Police for fraud under $5,000.

In May, Saanich police put out a warning to Capital Region residents about a pressure washing scam. Jantzen, at the time, said the name "Kevin Gordon" was being used by the scammer.

Oak Bay Det.-Const. Mike Martin says their fraud charge against Gordon stems from this pressure washing scam, where victims paid for services that were never completed.

Gordon appeared in court in Victoria Wednesday afternoon (Aug. 1). He was charged with seven new counts of fraud, stemming from the pressure washing scam, for incidents that occurred in Saanich and Colwood.

Saanich police Sgt. Scott Treble said in a press release that several of the pressure washing scam victims also reported having jewelry, credit cards, identification cards and other items stolen from their homes.

kslavin@saanichnews.com

 

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