Timeline: 'High risk police operation' underway

By Greg Fry
October 27, 2017 - 11:05am Updated: October 27, 2017 - 3:05pm

KAMLOOPS — NOTE: This story has been updated and synthesized here.

 

2:25 p.m.: A CFJC viewer has sent in video of a pursuit that eventually led police to an intensive search at the G&M Trailer Park.

The Snapchat video shows a green pickup truck speeding past a location on the Tk'emlups Reserve, with several police vehicles not far behind.

 

2:05 p.m.: Due to today's ongoing police incident near the G&M Trailer Park, School District 73 has been advised District buses won't be able to travel through the area or return students from their schools to the area under police control.

Students who live in Sun Rivers, the G&M Trailer Park or on East Shuswap Road and who rely on a bus to get to and from the following schools will be affected:

  • South Kamloops Secondary School
  • Valleyview Secondary School
  • Marion Schilling Elementary School
  • Lloyd George Elementary School
  • South Sa-Hali Elementary School

The District will keep all affected students at their school until they can be picked up by their parents or another approved adult. The affected schools will remain open until the kids are picked up.

Only students at the schools listed above are affected. All other schools will release their students at the end of the day as usual.

The District adds no schools or students are at risk. The police operation does not involve nor centre around SD 73 schools and only impacts the ability of the buses to travel through or in the area under police control.

 

12:55 p.m.: An employee at a manufacturing plant on the Tk'emlups Reserve says he watched a gun battle between RCMP and an apparent suspect this morning.

Chris Brown works at Varsteel, at the corner of Chilcotin Road and Athabasca Street.

Brown says at about 10:15 this morning, while he and his coworkers were on a coffee break, they heard a commotion outside and went to see what was happening.

They saw a man in a green pickup truck being pursued by several police vehicles.

"We heard the first shot and then got up to go see what that was because tires had screeched first," said Brown. "(We) got up to go and look and there was police everywhere. Then he shot again, it was like 'pop pop pop pop pop' of return fire from the police.

"It was surreal. Like straight out of TV, but being right there."

Brown says he and his coworkers were protected by their building, but other workers nearby were much more vulnerable.

"There's a construction site right across the street from us. And I guess they all ran for cover, because they're right out in the open."

Brown says the suspect was able to escape, and likely ended up at the G&M Trailer Park, where police are focused now.

After the situation had calmed down, Brown noticed a bullet hole on the outside of the Varsteel warehouse.

"We were on coffee, so fortunately we weren't in the warehouse when it happened."

 

12:32 p.m.: Kamloops RCMP remain on the scene of  what they're calling "a high risk situation" at the G & M Trailer Park, across from the Powwow Ground on Highway 5.

Cpl. Jodi Shelki says the situation concerns an individual suspected of having a firearm. There is "significant" police presence on hand, including an Emergency Response Team and local detachment resources.

"Police continue to ask residents of G & M Trailer Park to remain inside their residences, and lock their doors and windows. Unless advised by police, they should not go outside," she says.

Shelkie notes the public is asked to avoid the area to "allow police the opportunity to safely resolve this matter."

The unfolding situation has closed Highway 5 in both directions at Mt. Paul Way and Valleyview exchange. As a result, motorists are asked to avoid the area too.

"We are asking the public not to share any information about specific police activities or locations on social media," she adds.

Shelkie also asks the public not to call 911 for any updates.

 

11:50 a.m.: Kamloops RCMP say Highway 5 between the Trans Canada Highway and Mount Paul Way is closed.

Cpl. Jodi Shelkie reiterates it is important for members of the public to adhere to police direction during this operation.

 

11:25 a.m.: The Tk'emlups School has been placed on lockdown.

 

11:15 a.m.: Juli Holloway works in the former residential school building near the intersection of Shuswap Road and Highway 5.

She says she heard gunshots and saw a police vehicle ram someone apparently trying to escape.

"We watched them all race into the trailer park over there, G&M, and we heard the gunshots," said Holloway. "Then we saw the (armoured) vehicle go racing down there and crash into a vehicle. It looked like it was stopping them from running away."

"We can still see people running. It looks cops - we're kind of far away, but they're running around. There are quite a few (police) vehicles over there. The cops of it shut down with no traffic allowed to go through the intersection and now we're not allowed to leave the building either."

 

11:05 a.m.: Kamloops RCMP have launched what it's calling "a high risk police operation" in an area near the G & M Trailer Park.

Police are requesting that the residents of the trailer park "remain inside their residences, with doors locked" and to stay safe.

If anyone sees anything suspicious they are asked to call the Kamloops RCMP at 250-828-3000.

A heavy police presence near the G & M Trailer Park has backed up traffic on Highway 5 North near Sun Rivers.

We'll update this story as soon as more information becomes available.

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