100 Mile House RCMP closed Highway 97 just north of Lac La Hache and at Maze Lake Road.
On Monday night at 7:41 they along with Williams Lake RCMP responded to a report of a man along the east side of Highway 97 holding a firearm and reportedly pointing it at passing vehicles.
Staff Sargeant Svend Neilsen said multiple witnesses reported the man holding a shotgun and lying prone along the highway, secondary reports indicated a man in a red hoodie was also with the man holding the gun.
“Other officers assisting arrived on scene and a high-risk patrol was completed along the highway looking for evidence or a potential suspect. The North District RCMP Emergency Response Team was activated for this event and responded from areas across the district. Further investigation by both detachments manning the checkpoints confirmed that dashcam had captured what appeared to be a Caucasian man holding a rifle or shotgun along the edge of the highway and pointing it along the edge of the road.” Nielsen said.
Officers spoke with several witnesses, one identified a residence as a possible location having seen a man target shooting with what looked like a pellet rifle the previous day.
Police located the residence and observed two men matching the descriptions of witnesses and dash camera evidence.
“The man from the dashcam image was initially arrested.” Neilsen said, “Further investigation with the cooperative property owners and tenants confirmed a pellet gun had been in use the last two days on their property in an attempt to rid the front yard of small rodents infesting the front yard and destroying waters and sewage lines.”
Police released the man from custody.
Neilsen added that further discussion with the property owner and tenants was completed and contact with other local agencies, including Conservation, was offered and accepted, and the Highway was reopened.
RCMP would like to remind the public that awareness of your surroundings is a major consideration when taking any conservation action were some type of weapon, firearm, or even a pellet rifle, especially when adjacent to a major thoroughfare.
Police say the investigation is concluded.