KAMLOOPS — It's an incident on Friday that shook the entire community. What started out as a domestic disturbance in the morning turned into a shootout and subsequent standoff.
As police chased Shane Caron on the Tk'emlups reserve, shots were fired at members, four seperate times.
Two mounties involved suffered minor injuries, including one with a knee injury and another who went to hospital to have his ear checked from the gunfire.
Kamloops RCMP say the members directly involved and the entire force are still processing the incident.
"Many police officers that were working on Friday, it's had a huge impact on all of us," says Cpl. Jodi Shelkie. "Whether we were actually directly involved in the pursuit or the shootings or with the barricaded male. All of us that were listening to the radio live through the other police officers that are out there."
The Mounties directly involved have remained on regular duty, but are going through counselling to process the experience.
Being shot at is not foreign to Rob Creasser, a former Mountie who faced a similar situation in the early 1990s near Monte Lake.
"We were three-and-a-half, four feet apart and he turned and I saw the flash from the weapon and I fell over the front of the vehicle and he took off running down the road past my police car and I guess we found him about an our later," he says. "They're probably focused on the task until probably everything's wound down and I hope they've had an opportunity to go through a critical incident debriefing."
Supt. Brad Mueller noted in his news conference on Saturday that the officers were equipped for the confrontation with Caron.
"It's very important for us to ensure that we have the proper training, the proper tactical equipment to respond and in this instance we had our carbines, our carbine rifles, which our officers were carrying and were able to find an appropriate response to this."
But Creasser, who's been an advocate over the years for better and safer working conditions and equipment for the RCMP, says you may have the right tools but a shooting and subsequent standoff can become more dangerous with a lack of resources.
"Well the equipment is one thing, having the adequate resources is certainly another and I think what Supt. Mueller also talked about is obviously would've been a huge drain on resoruces and other calls for service were basically put on hold," he says. "So, if you've got one major incident going on in the City of Kamloops, what happens if there is another one?"
Creasser says hiring more officers has been a longstanding push by the Mounted Police Professional Association of Canada, an independent organization. Creasser says governments, and taxpayers, have to be willing to pay the money to protect their community.
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