On November 12, 2020 at 12:35 p.m., The Penticton RCMP responded to a report of a man allegedly handling a handgun while sitting in the passenger seat of a vehicle at the Superstore parking lot. Witnesses advised it appeared the man was loading bullets into the magazine. Police attended to the vehicle and spoke to a man who initially complied with the officers. Once out of the vehicle the man became noncompliant, ignoring police commands while turning away from the police and reaching into his pockets. A conducted energy weapon was deployed after which the man was taken into custody. A search of the vehicle revealed a pellet gun which could have easily been mistaken for a real firearm.
“Pellet guns or replica firearms have become almost identical in appearance to the real thing. It is very difficult for the public or an officer to tell the difference,” states Sgt. Jason Bayda, Media Relations Officer for the Penticton South Okanagan RCMP. “This is why it is so important to remain cognizant of where you are handling them. Handling them in view of public in a busy area is going to garner a quick police response that often requires police to have to make split second decisions.”
It was later determined the pellet gun had been purchased to manage a rodent problem at the man’s residence.
Sergeant Jason BAYDA