Police service dog Herc helped RCMP locate and arrest suspects in the Ladysmith area on Oct. 23, 2020, related to a stolen vehicle. (Submitted)

Police service dog Herc helped RCMP locate and arrest suspects in the Ladysmith area on Oct. 23, 2020, related to a stolen vehicle. (Submitted)

RCMP nab prolific property offender in Ladysmith with assist from police dog Herc

Police attempted to stop the vehicle but it fled from the area towards Chemainus.

A well-being check in Crofton on Oct. 23, and some good detective work by police dog Herc, led to the arrest of a chronic property offender in Ladysmith.

North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP officers responded to a report of a man and woman acting suspiciously in the Crofton area near a vehicle. Front line officers and members of the Street Crime Unit attended and confirmed that both the licence plate and 2019 Chevrolet Impala that the suspects were using were stolen. Police attempted to stop the vehicle but it fled from the area towards Chemainus. Ladysmith RCMP spotted the vehicle on the Trans-Canada Highway and followed it to the Oyster Sto’Lo Road area, north of town.

Shortly afterwards, Ladysmith RCMP attempted a traffic stop a second time and the occupants fled on foot. Officers from the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP, Ladysmith RCMP, and Nanaimo RCMP, including a Police Dog Service officer, set up an area perimeter. A couple from the Courtenay area was located hiding in a trailer on a nearby property and arrested with the assistance of police service dog Herc.

“This investigation required a high and constant risk assessment given that the suspect was in possession of a stolen vehicle and was very motivated to avoid arrest,” said Street Crimes Unit commander Cpl. Trevor March. “Having the ability to engage officers from three different jurisdictions allowed us to maintain public safety and apprehend this priority offender in the best way possible.”

Prolific offender Cameron Sebastian, age 26, was arrested and police confirmed that he had numerous outstanding warrants for his arrest. Sebastian was held in custody facing charges of possession of stolen property over $5,000, break and enter, flight from police and other charges. A 21-year-old female has been released on several charges and is scheduled to appear in Duncan court on Jan. 12, 2021.

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