British Columbia

'We want to make sure we have a community that's safe': Dawson Creek mayor responds to violent crimes

The city of Dawson Creek, in northeastern B.C., has been hit with a string of crimes. In the first two weeks of November, RCMP have responded to multiple shootings, a wounded victim and a violent home invasion.

RCMP are looking for witnesses to a number of incidents

The mayor of Dawson Creek worries that outside gangs could be at the centre of the recent crime sprees. (Andrew Kurjata/CBC)

The City of Dawson Creek, in northeastern B.C., has been hit with a string of crimes. In the first two weeks of November, RCMP have responded to multiple shootings, a wounded victim and a violent home invasion.

"This serious crime, this isn't a normal occurrence for a community like ours," said Dale Bumstead, the mayor of Dawson Creek.

"We're concerned about it, and our expectation is that the RCMP are going to deal with it expeditiously — and they have."

Two men were arrested after a man was found suffering from multiple gunshot wounds, Nov. 2, near the Alaska Highway and 17 Street.

Twenty-two-year-old Ghislain Cormier and 20-year-old Chase Schwab have been charged with attempted murder and forcible confinement, along with numerous firearms offences.

In a separate incident on Nov 6, a man was driving near 10th street and 107th Avenue when he felt that he was being followed by another vehicle.

According to a statement from Dawson Creek RCMP,  the driver turned his vehicle around to confront the person who was tailing him.

The driver of the second vehicle then fired multiple rounds in the man's direction, striking the car multiple times but missing the man.

The next morning, RCMP were again called to a separate incident in the nearby community of Rolla, where a man was found with serious injuries.

Police believe all three of the attacks were targeted but haven't confirmed that they are connected.

RCMP have yet to confirm whether the crimes are connected. (CBC News/Andrew Kurjata)

On Nov 8, one person was assaulted during a home invasion in the village of Pouce Coupe, just outside of Dawson Creek's city limits.

Police say the suspect had stolen a black Dodge Dually pickup, which was later found abandoned near the Alberta border on Road 201 off of Highway 49.

The uptick in crime has led Mayor Bumstead to question the root of the violence.

"Usually, it means someone's coming into the city who's involved in serious criminal activity, like gangs," he said. "As a small community, public safety always resonates. We want to make sure we have a community that's safe."

Anyone with information on any of these incidents is asked to contact the Dawson Creek RCMP.

With files from Nicole Oud


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