A Victoria Police Department investigation into a stolen vehicle led to a loaded firearm confiscation at one site and an arrest of a barricaded man at another Wednesday evening.
Patrol officers responding to the stolen vehicle call at a multi-unit residential building in the 700-block of Queens Avenue just before 5 p.m. on July 13 found a loaded shotgun, ammunition and other firearms accessories inside the vehicle.
A search for the man last seen driving the vehicle led police to a temporary housing facility in the 200-block of Gorge Road East after 10 p.m. Patrol and integrated canine service officers entered the building and evacuated units around the one the suspect was believed to be in. After opening his door to police and being told he’d be arrested, the suspect barricaded himself inside.
The Greater Victoria Emergency Response Team including crisis negotiators were brought in an attempt to resolve the incident peacefully, which took until just before midnight when the suspect surrendered himself.
When the man emerged, what appeared to be smoke began billowing from the suite. Firefighters called to the scene determined it was steam caused by the suspect damaging hot water pipes in an attempt to escape through a wall into a neighbouring suite.
Officers learned there were three more people in the suite, two of whom exited when asked. They were briefly detained and found to have no connection to the original investigation.
As water poured into the suite and the neighbouring unit, the third person barricaded themselves and initially refused to exit, telling officers there was an active warrant out for his arrest. When negotiations were unsuccessful, police used an irritant gas to flush them out just before 1 a.m. and they surrendered to officers shortly afterward. A check found no outstanding arrest warrant and the person was offered treatment for gas exposure and released.
The arrested man faced recommended charges for firearm possession, careless use of firearm, possession of stolen property, firearm or ammunition possession against court order, prohibited driving and breach of release conditions.
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