Dec 9, 2013 / 1:14 pm
A 64-year-old woman is dead following a house fire in Langley.
Flames broke out at the house in the 20300-block of Grade Cres. around 9 p.m. Sunday night and quickly tore through the roof -- igniting the wooden shingles.
It took crews more than an hour to get the upper hand on the fire. They also had to deal with some sparking live wires which caused some nearby bushes to catch fire. BC Hydro was able to finally shut down power to the area.
The woman was a longtime resident of the home, authorities told CTV News, but her husband was not at the residence when the fire started.
The cause is under investigation. The incident was reported by a couple driving by who saw the smoke and pulled over to call police.
The house is currently behind police tape and investigators are keeping a watch over the home.
Dec 9, 2013 / 11:20 am
Kamloops RCMP have confirmed three arrests have been made in relation to the murder of Archie LePretre that occurred on March 22, 2011 at 3rd Avenue and Battle Street in Kamloops.
At approximately 4:44 p.m. on March 22, 2011, Kamloops RCMP were called to the scene where a male was reportedly stabbed.
The 23 year old male was pronounced dead at Royal Inland Hospital a short time later and identified as Archie LePretre.
LePretre was from Vancouver and was visiting a cousin in Kamloops at the time of his death.
At the time of the attack, police established that LePretre and his cousin were targeted and that the attack was gang related.
The investigation revealed that there were three male suspects believed to be from a known rival gang.
On Friday December 6th, 2013 Kamloops Serious Crime Unit made three arrests in relation to the homicide.
Travis Johnny, 24, is in custody facing a murder charge. Two other males were arrested in relation to the investigation but were later released, as their role in the incident is still under investigation.
Dec 9, 2013 / 9:18 am
A British Columbia pot activist has come up 100,000 signatures short in his province-wide petition aimed at decriminalizing marijuana.
Sensible BC Director Dana Larsen has been collecting signatures since the summer in an attempt to eventually propose a law that would prevent police from enforcing simple marijuana possession laws.
Legislation rules say Larsen must collect just over 300,000 signatures by today's deadline to force either a vote in the legislature or a non-binding referendum, but Larsen says he expects to hand over just 200,000 signatures to Elections BC this afternoon.
Still, Larsen says Sensible BC will continue its push for decriminalization, and another signature drive is possible in the future.
Several former B.C. politicians have thrown their support behind the decriminalization of marijuana, and federal Liberal leader Justin Trudeau has been outspoken about his support for the legalization, taxation and regulation of pot.
The Liberal government in B.C. has largely avoided marijuana reform, saying drug laws are in the federal government's jurisdiction.
Dec 9, 2013 / 7:44 am
Police have confirmed that the body of missing North Shore senior Joan Warren has been found in Lynn Canyon Park.
On Sunday afternoon a hiker and his dog came across the deceased 76-year-old woman in an area not far from the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge.
Warren, who had Alzheimer’s disease, wandered away from her seniors living home on Friday morning.
After a weekend of extensive searching in frigid temperatures, RCMP and North Shore Rescue called off the search earlier in the day, but urged the public to stay vigilant and keep their eyes open for the missing woman.
According to her daughter, Warren was moved to Sunrise Senior Living in August after she had become lost after going for a walk from her own home.
“She had a bracelet that she was wearing so that she couldn’t go out without an alarm sounding off but I guess she wasn’t wearing it on Friday,” Warren’s daughter, Celia Dino said.
Earlier in the day before her mother was found, Dino had said the cold weather had her worried about a positive outcome.
“The weather is so cold we’re not really holding out a lot of hope but we are really looking for some closure,” she said. “We need to find her.
“When we feel like this has some closure then we’ll be standing back and looking at the whole situation and what happened and try to piece it together.”
The director of operations at Sunrise Senior Living said he couldn’t comment on how Warren was able to wander away from her care home without anyone noticing.
Dec 9, 2013 / 7:29 am
An atheist group is considering a human rights complaint after a billboard company refused to run its advertisements in downtown Vancouver.
The Centre for Inquiry Canada created two billboard designs playing on Bible verses, with one depicting a smiling woman holding a coffee next to the words “Jenn 13:1.”
Underneath it reads, “Praying won’t help. Doing will.”
CFI Canada board member Pat O’Brien said the organization submitted the ads to Pattison Outdoor but was told they were unacceptable.
“What they asked us to do was come back with a redesign and they would consider that,” O’Brien said. “We don’t think it’s the place of the billboard company to determine what our message should be.”
The group also said it can’t afford to redesign the ad, which was funded by an anonymous donation of $20,000. The giver stipulated that the money should go toward a billboard for the organization in the Vancouver area.
Pattison Outdoor told CTV News it had no issue with the nature of the ad, but required minor changes to comply with guidelines.
“We’re not banning them from running their ad. It’s not a freedom of speech issue, it’s simply that we have guidelines in our company in regards to advocacy advertising which we try to follow,” president Randy Otto said.
“They refused to make any changes to the copy whatsoever.”
Otto said the company requires advocacy groups to be clearly identified and provide a way to contact them.
The ads CFI Canada showed CTV News contain the organization’s full name and website address.
O’Brien said asking the group to redesign its ad amounts to “censorship by bankruptcy.”
“We had already spent our design budget, we’re a small organization with a limited amount of money to spend,” he said.
The group is seeking legal advice, but said it may end up contacting other advertising agencies.
O’Brien said CFI Canada is hoping to have the ad up in time for its year-end fundraising, and a Human Rights Tribunal case could take months.
Dec 8, 2013 / 7:46 pm
To Gwen Johansson, the most valuable thing about the Peace River that wends its way though northern British Columbia and Alberta is the view from her kitchen window.
It's been her home for almost 40 years, but it will be one of dozens flooded if BC Hydro's $8-billion Site C hydroelectric dam is approved. Johansson is one of a small but determined group of landowners who hope to convince an environmental review panel that the Crown agency's "clean" hydro power plans are not so green.
"I live here because of the valley, because it's such a beautiful place to live," says Johansson, who is also the mayor of Hudson's Hope, a small community of about a thousand people that will find itself with a reservoir view — minus a riverfront road or two — should the dam go ahead.
Joint federal-provincial review hearings under the banner of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency are set to begin Monday in Fort St. John. The panel will spend weeks travelling to communities throughout the region.
The $7.9-billion hydroelectric dam would be built seven kilometres downstream from Fort St. John and flood an 83-kilometre stretch of the Peace River upstream. It would also flood 10 kilometres at the mouth of the Moberly River and 14 kilometres of the Halfway River that feed into the Peace.
The dam would provide enough power for the equivalent of 450,000 homes and is the centrepiece of BC Hydro's plans for meeting electricity needs over the next 20 years, when the Crown utility anticipates a 40 per cent increase in demand.
But it is what will be lost, not what will be gained, that weighs on local residents.
The Peace Valley is a micro-climate in a chilly northern region where farmers can grow produce impossible just a few kilometres away, such as corn and melons. The project would result in the largest single removal of land in the history of the province's Agricultural Land Reserve.
The Peace Valley Environment Association says the amount of land at issue is also misleading. While almost 100 square kilometres of forest and farmland will be flooded, association spokeswoman Andrea Morison says another 230 square kilometres of land will be behind "impact lines," where banks may slough off into the water over time.
Historical sites, aboriginal grave sites and areas of significance to area First Nations would be underwater, including Rocky Mountain Portage House, a Northwest Company trading post built in 1805.
"This river is very much a heritage river. It was the route of the fur traders," Johansson says, adding that explorers Alexander Mackenzie and Simon Fraser both came though the valley.
The Treaty 8 Nations also oppose the dam. George Desjarlais of the West Moberly band says the project will cut off a migration corridor for foothills wildlife in the same way the W.A.C. Bennett dam built in the 1960s cut off the migration corridor for mountain wildlife.
"On the south side of the reservoir, the sheep the goats and the caribou started to decline. Today, there's no goats that we know of," Desjarlais says. "Caribou are completely declining, to the point where they're listed as an endangered or threatened species both by the province and the federal government."
Site C will cut off the migration route of foothill ungulates such as deer, elk, and moose, Desjarlais says.Last week, Esther and Poul Pedersen watched a herd of elk swim across the river from their property a few kilometres west of Fort St. John. From the cliff's edge, Poul can point to where the dam would be built downstream.
The dream home where they operate a horse ranch will be in the impact zone within which the banks may erode over time. They say BC Hydro has offered to buy them out, but they're not selling.
The valley has paid its portion of the cost of progress, Poul says.
"Nobody is saying we don't need the energy," Esther says. "Get it somewhere else."
Under new federal rules, the environmental review hearings will wrap up by the end of January. A decision is expected by mid-year.
Dec 8, 2013 / 4:26 pm
The RCMP say a suspect is in custody after a weekend rampage left that half a dozen police cars damaged and a hospital emergency room flooded.
The Mounties say the mayhem started early Sunday morning at shopping mall in Burnaby, where the suspect drove a stolen Jeep SUV and then a stolen moving van into six marked police cars.
A news release says the man was arrested and taken to hospital for a psychiatric assessment.
But while at Burnaby General Hospital, the man pulled out a sprinkler head, causing the facility's fire sprinkler system to activate and flood the emergency room.
The hospital's emergency room was closed for part of the day on Sunday, with incoming patients diverted to other health-care facilities.
The RCMP say they're also looking into another incident on Saturday, in which someone at a health-care facility in Surrey became agitated and broke off a sprinkler head, causing water damage to the building.
The suspect in that case is believed to have driven away in a Jeep SUV.
Dec 7, 2013 / 9:17 pm
Canada's luge relay team of Alex Gough, Sam Edney, Tristan Walker and Justin Snith won silver at the World Cup event in Whistler, B.C., with a combined time of 2 minutes 4.202 seconds.
Germany's Natalie Geisenberger, Felix Loch, Tobias Arlt and Tobias Wendl finished first in 2:03.791, while the Austrian team placed third in 2:04.686.
Canada placed second in the relay event at the World Cup in Igls, Austria two weeks ago.
Earlier, Gough took silver in the women's event, finishing 0.133 seconds away from first place. Geisenberger finished in 1:13.412 seconds for gold and Anke Wischnewski, also of Germany, was third in 1:13.622.
Canadians Kimberley McRae, Arianne Jones, and Jordan Smith, all also from Calgary, finished 11th, 14th and 17th, respectively.
Dec 6, 2013 / 10:03 pm
A 42-year-old Coquitlam, BC woman has been convicted for stabbing her former boyfriend to death in his trailer park home.
Darlene Daigle was found guilty of killing 39-year-old Peter Markus.
She was convicted of second-degree murder by a BC Supreme Court jury in New Westminster on Thursday.
Cpl Dominic Duchesneau says the pair had ended a relationship six months before the killing.
RCMP were called to his trailer park home in Coquitlam on January 2010.
Daigle is still awaiting sentencing.
Dec 6, 2013 / 7:49 pm
A stranded boater who was forced to brave strong winds and spend the night in a remote channel on British Columbia's north coast has been rescued from shore.
Air force Cpt Trevor Reid says the man reported mechanical difficulties with his eight-metre boat in Douglas Channel on Thursday afternoon before losing contact.
He says the Air Force sent a Buffalo airplane and Cormorant helicopter from Comox, BC, to assist in the coast guard's search but their efforts were hampered by winds of between 50 and 70 kilometres an hour.
The search was called off for the night, resumed in the morning, and Reid says coast guard members aboard a fast-response boat spotted the man's partially submerged vessel just after noon on Friday.
Reid says crew aboard the Buffalo found the man, who was wearing an orange floater jacket, and pinpointed his location on shore with a smoke marker.
He says coast guard members took the man to Kitimat, and that he was in good condition.
Dec 5, 2013 / 7:16 pm
BC Hydro says about 54,000 customers were left without power late Thursday afternoon because of an incident at a substation on southern Vancouver Island.
Spokesman Ted Olynyk says the major event occurred after a problem with protection-and-control equipment at a substation in downtown Victoria, B.C.
He says the substation changes the voltage of electricity that arrives on transmission lines and then sends it back out to the community on distribution lines.
Olynyk says workers restored power to most if not all of the customers within an hour, but the exact cause of the outage is still under investigation.
He says nobody was hurt in the incident.
The commercial Crown corporation says it serves about 95 per cent of the province's population through 76,000 kilometres of transmission and distribution lines, some 300 substations and about 1 million utility poles.
Dec 5, 2013 / 2:54 pm
Kimberley RCMP have confirmed that two people are dead and a third person has been sent to hospital after a collision near Moyie Lake, south of Cranbrook.
Highway 3/95 is closed in both directions at Moyie and Shores Road because of the crash and no detour is available.
The highway is expected to be closed for several hours.
Dec 5, 2013 / 10:58 am
The B.C. School Trustees Association is asking the government for a break from soaring energy costs, saying power rate increases will mean fewer programs for students.
Energy Minister Bill Bennett announced last month that hydro rates will go up by 40 per cent over the next decade, with the first increase of nine per cent coming next spring.
Association president Teresa Rezansoff says hydro costs for more than 1,600 schools across the province already cost $35.5 million a year.
She says the rate increase will push that figure up by an estimated $4.1 million next year, and by about $29 million over the next five years.
Rezansoff says school boards already get limited funding, and the rising utility costs will lead to additional staff losses and fewer student services.
The association is asking Bennett to either exempt public schools from the rate increases or to provide a special rate for schools.
Dec 5, 2013 / 7:53 am
Walter the sea otter should be in high spirits these days.
The rescued critter was found wounded and blind after suffering gunshot wounds to the head, but the Vancouver Aquarium announced Wednesday he is no longer in critical condition.
In a release, the aquarium said Walter is now considered stable after seven weeks of receiving critical care and a number of successful surgeries to fix shattered bones in one of his flippers.
Walter also received oral surgery to treat broken teeth caused by the shotgun blast. Three of the teeth were extracted and the otter needed complex root canal surgery to save one of his canine teeth.
Dr. Martin Haulena, an aquarium veterinarian, said Walter has made “significant progress” in his recovery.
“His flexibility has improved, which means he can now groom himself much better,” he said. “Due to his injuries, however, Walter will likely never regain his sight.”
Because of his injuries, it’s likely the sea otter will have to stay under the care of the Vancouver Aquarium for the rest of his life.
Walter was found on a Tofino beach in mid-October. Someone riddled his body with buckshot, leaving him to die a slow, painful death.
It is believed Walter was intentionally fired on by a shotgun.
There were at least a dozen buckshots scattered around his head, shoulders and hind-quarters
Dec 5, 2013 / 7:39 am
Richmond Mounties are investigating a shooting that put a man in hospital with life-threatening injuries Wednesday evening.
The victim was shot at a tile store in the 11100-block of Bridgeport Road around 6 p.m.
He managed to cross the street and find someone to call 911. He was rushed to hospital in an ambulance.
RCMP have not confirmed how many times the victim was shot or whether the incident was linked to drugs, gangs or organized crime.
No suspects have been identified but officers and a K9 unit were called to search the area.
Bridgeport Road between Shell and Simpson roads remained closed as of 9 p.m.
Anyone with information on the shooting is asked to contact the Richmond RCMP detachment.
Dec 4, 2013 / 3:30 pm
British Columbia's highest court has doubled a prison term to 10 years for an elderly father who sexually abused his daughters, sexually touched his granddaughter and once described his family as his "harem."
The man named only as K.V.E in the ruling was sentenced June 5, 2013, to a five-year term for three counts of incest on his daughters and two years for sexual touching his grandaughter, all of which was to be served concurrently.
But the Crown appealed the sentence, arguing it wasn't proportionate to the gravity of the offences.
All three B.C. Court of Appeal judges hearing the case agreed with the Crown recommendation to increase the prison term to 10 years.
In a ruling issued today, Justice Sunni Stromberg-Stein says the sentencing judge gave insufficient weight to the principles of deterrence and denunciation, and the original sentence was disproportionate to the gravity of the offences.
Stromberg-Stein says a more appropriate sentence is five years for each count of incest, two years for sexual touching, all to be served consecutively, but has settled on 10 years.
Dec 4, 2013 / 12:00 pm
British Columbia New Democrat Leader Adrian Dix is calling for the abolition of Canada's Senate.
Dix says he will introduce a motion in the BC legislature in February to get rid of the Senate and he'll ask for support from the Liberal government.
Dix told a Vancouver news conference he wants BC to join Saskatchewan and Manitoba in support of Senate abolition.
He says the ongoing Senate scandals have turned the upper chamber into an object of national ridicule and it's time to get rid of the upper house Senate.
Dix says Premier Christy Clark should support what he's calling the NDP's principled stand and vote to get rid of the Senate rather than repeatedly change positions on support for Senate reforms.
New Democrat House Leader John Horgan called the Senate a trash heap of undemocratic appointments.
Dec 4, 2013 / 7:50 am
Police are considering charges after an SUV plowed through the front of a Thrifty Foods on Vancouver Island Tuesday afternoon, injuring three shoppers.
The driver, believed to be a 75-year-old woman, drove a white Subaru into the Thrifty Foods on Quadra Street in Saanich at around 3:15 p.m., hitting a checkout till and knocking over a handful of customers.
Const. Mark Prill said the victims are around 40, 60 and 70 years old, and nobody was seriously injured.
“They fell back as a result of the car hitting the till but the most serious injury might have been a broken leg to one of them,” Prill said.
“They were all alert, talking to us and in reasonably good spirits considering the circumstances.”
The cause of the crash is still under investigation. A witness told CTV News it appeared the driver was trying to park when she accidentally hit the gas instead of the brake and drove into the store.
Police don’t believe there are any mechanical issues with the Subaru. Prill said charges are pending against the suspect driver, who was not injured in the crash.
Read more BC News
- BC strikes tentative union deals
- Teen labelled as high risk for terrorism
- Pot referendum pipe dream up in smoke
- Woman's body found in Burnaby suite
- Accused's ex-girlfriend helped sell drugs
- Grand theft vessel after ferry stolen
- Family of five submerged in river
- Highway 1 reopened
- Victim identified in Vancouver homicide
- Man arrested after calling 9-1-1 for help
- Hunter found after cold BC night
- 60-year-old shot and killed
(Click for RSS instructions.)