Bridge bandits revealed

UPDATED: 1 p.m.
The two men who were arrested at gunpoint on the William R. Bennett bridge Thursday in a takedown that shut down eastbound traffic will remain in custody after appearing in court Friday.

Michael Dennison, 25, and Ryan Regan, 33, are facing multiple charges after Thursday's events, which began when Penticton police attempted to pull over a suspicious vehicle. The driver took off, but police passed on the description of the vehicle to other police detachments.

West Kelowna police unsuccessfully tried to stop the vehicle on Highway 97 near Gorman Bros. Lumber mill, but the pair was finally stopped and apprehended on the bridge.

A Kelowna man who's currently travelling in Thailand says the car the pair was driving was stolen from his home in Rutland on the weekend. 

Dennison faces charges of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, flight from police, operating a vehicle while disqualified and breach of probation, while Regan faces charges of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, flight from police, two counts of failure to stop at an accident, two counts of mischief over $5,000 and assault with a weapon.

This is not the first time these men have had run-ins with the law.

Dennison recently got out of jail after serving 102 days behind bars, beginning in September, for theft of a motor vehicle and dangerous operation of a vehicle after a June 7 incident. He was on probation and a driving prohibition when he was arrested Thursday.

Additionally, Dennison had been convicted of two charges of possession of stolen property over $5,000 for two separate incidents on May 25 and June 1, 2016, but he served no jail time for these crimes.

According to his Facebook page, Dennison attended Argyle Secondary School in North Vancouver. On Jan. 9, he changed his employment status to “self-employed.”

Regan has an even bigger criminal record, dating back to 2001. His multiple charges include several possession of stolen property over $5,000 convictions, trafficking in controlled substances, breaking and entering and flight from police.

He most recently spent a year in jail and paid $15,000 in restitution for a conviction of breaking and entering and possession of stolen property in Kelowna that took place on May 8, 2010.

According to his Facebook page, Regan attended Penticton High School but currently lives in Kelowna. 

The two men will be back in court on Jan. 16.

ORIGINAL: 9:28 a.m.

Two men arrested on the bridge over Okanagan Lake in a high-profile takedown are expected to appear in court in Kelowna.

Mounties with rifles and handguns drawn arrested two people after several cars, including an RCMP cruiser, were damaged in the chaos.

The men, both from Kelowna, are 33 years old and a 25 years old.

More details have been released about what led to the partial shutdown of the William R. Bennet bridge.

RCMP say police in Penticton stopped two people in a "suspicious vehicle" earlier in the morning. The driver sped off before police could speak with them.

Police chose not to pursue, but tipped nearby detachments off about the vehicle.

Police in West Kelowna also tried unsuccessfully to stop the vehicle.

"We very much appreciate the public’s patience when it comes to situations such as this," says Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey. "Making sure no one gets hurt is always our top goal, and that’s why we’re very pleased to have resources such as Air Services and police dogs to help us quickly conclude these type of situations."

The two men are facing multiple charges.

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