Quesnel RCMP has seized drugs, cash, and a handgun after using spike belts to stop a vehicle travelling at approximately 180 kilometres per hour and failed to stop for police.
Around 5:17 PM last night (Thursday), an RCMP North District Traffic Officer attempted to stop a northbound Mercedes sedan reportedly travelling 145 kilometres per hour on Highway 97 south of Quesnel. The car did not stop and sped away at around 180 kilometres per hour.
According to RCMP, after the Mercedes entered the Quesnel City limits a second police vehicle unsuccessfully attempted to stop the car, which drove into oncoming lanes in a construction zone on Highway 97. Witnesses also reported the vehicle driving dangerously down Dragon Lake Hill, swerving in and out of traffic at high rates of speed.
Police say they used two spike belts on the north side of the Quesnel River Bridge to successfully deflate the Mercedes’ tires. The driver still attempted to flee colliding with two civilian vehicles, and eventually lodged between a dump truck and another truck. The driver then reversed and rammed a police vehicle. After all this, police used a taser and pepper spray to arrest the male drive. A female passenger was also taken into custody.
Police say they saw what was believed to a large amount of drugs in the Mercedes, and applied for a search warrant. As a result, a loaded 9 mm pistol with a silencer, 723 grams of fentanyl, 659 grams of methamphetamine, 445 grams of cocaine, and around $20,000 in cash was seized by RCMP.
To put the drug seizure into perspective, cocaine is sold at the street level in half grams (0.5 grams) and meth and fentanyl are sold at the microgram (0.1 gram) amounts. When you do the math, this seizure took a lot of doses of harmful drugs off the streets, said Cpl. Matt Isaak of the Quesnel RCMP Crime Reduction Unit.
The fact that this man had a loaded handgun with a silencer is also disturbing and speaks to the level of violence associated to the drug trade.
The driver of the Mercedes was reckless and had a complete disregard for the safety of others on the road. Spike belts were used to stop the vehicle before it entered the downtown core as it was the end of the business day where there was a high volume of pedestrian and vehicle traffic, said Sgt. Richard Weseen of the Quesnel RCMP.
After the vehicle was disabled, the driver was goal-oriented to escape, colliding with civilian and police vehicles. We are fortunate he was stopped before he seriously injured anyone.
The male, 33, and the female, 30, from the Mercedes each sustained minor injuries during the arrest. No citizens or police officers were injured but some vehicles sustained damage during the collisions.
Police say the two suspects are not from the Quesnel area, and are facing several drug and firearm charges. Additional recommended charges will be forwarded to the Crown on the driver for flight from police, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, and breach of a release order.
If anyone has video of this incident, please contact the Quesnel RCMP at (250)992-9211.