British Columbia

Alberta truck driver recounts having truck commandeered, being held at gunpoint

‘You have two choices: I drive or you drive’

Courtney Dickson - CBC News

November 09, 2017

Robert Price, left, has been driving trucks since he was 13. (Robert Price/Facebook)

Robert Price, of Grande Cache, Alta., was taking a break during a routine trip, hauling lumber through B.C. on Nov. 6, when a man approached the driver's side window of his semi-truck.

"I rolled my window down a bit and he said he needed a drive out of there," Price said.

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When Price, who is unlikely to pick up a hitchhiker, ignored him, the man pulled out a gun and said "you have two choices: I drive or you drive."

David Lee Chappell, 33, is facing kidnapping and firearms charges after he hijacked Price's truck and demanded he drive him away.

Price said there was little conversation between him and Chappell as they drove down Highway 5. Price told Chappell he was headed to Abbotsford, but Chappell never said where he needed to go. 

RCMP knew Chappell was in the vehicle and managed to reach Price's boss in Grande Cache, who was able to contact Price on his cell phone.

The police were waiting for the truck near the Kamloops weigh scales. As Price approached the scales, he said Chappell was asleep.

As Price weighed his truck, he made a comment to his boss that something was wrong at the back of the truck.

"I gotta jump out for a minute," he said.

Price said he casually exited the truck and headed towards the back, where police were waiting for him.

RCMP tried to coax Chappell from the truck. When he tried to drive away, he ran the truck off the road: an act that not only left Price with costly repairs, but also deprived him of his working vehicle until those fixes can be carried out. 

Chappell is facing kidnapping and firearm charges.

He​ has a prior criminal record, including a charge of resisting arrest in Surrey in March 2017. 

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