RCMP airplane helps in arrest of speeding theft suspect

Police plane tracks suspect

Police in Kelowna say they made an arrest with the help of the RCMP air service team.

A woman in Kelowna called RCMP on May 29 to report $1,500 in cash had been stolen by a male acquaintance, according to a police news release.

The suspect was spotted fleeing the scene of the robbery on a blue Suzuki motorcycle with no visible licence plate and the victim indicated she believed the suspect would be heading to Kamloops.

Officers spotted the motorcycle travelling at a high rate of speed on Highway 97 near Lake Country. When Mounties tried to pull the driver over, he took off again at extreme speeds, ignoring police efforts to stop him.

Police stopped their chase to maintain public safety and called in the RCMP plane to pick up the pursuit from the air.

The suspect travelled from Westwold to Kamloops seemingly unaware that he was being followed from the sky, later parking his motorcycle at a local hotel and entered as if nothing was wrong, until RCMP officers converged on the hotel and arrested him.

“RCMP air services were deployed to lessen the dangers to other motorists by not getting into a high-speed pursuit with this individual,” said Const. Mike Della-Paolera

“In this particular case, our teams showed great patience and were able to make an arrest with the help of our colleagues in Kamloops when it was safe to do so.”

The suspect is now facing several charges including theft under $5,000, flight from police and dangerous operation of a motor vehicle.

"If you have dash camera video recordings of this incident or any others during your travels, it is always best to make sure you report it to the police. Please call the Kelowna RCMP at (250) 762-3300 to arrange for officers to view the footage," added Const. Della-Paolera.

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