All the Vernon police officer was trying to do was be a good Samaritan and help a vehicle out of a snowbank.
The officer didn’t expect the driver to run away.
Shortly after 1:30 a.m. Thursday, the officer was patrolling northbound on 32nd Street between 37th and 39th Avenues when she noticed a vehicle stuck in a snowbank facing north in the southbound lane.
“When our officer approached the car, a lone male was seen in the driver’s seat,” said Vernon RCMP spokesperson Gord Molendyk.
“As our officer pulled up beside the grey Buick, the man got out of the driver’s seat, and started to walk away. When our officer told the man to stop, he turned and ran.”
The suspect was found a short distance away hiding behind a tree. He was arrested for theft of a motor vehicle.
The registered owner of the vehicle is a man from Kimberley who just happened to be walking back to his room after having had breakfast at a local restaurant.
He noticed his own vehicle in the snowbank.
“He told the officer nobody should be driving it as he was staying at a nearby motel for the night,” said Molendyk.
The suspect is a 40-year-old man with a Nelson address.
He was slated to appear in Vernon Provincial Court Thursday to face charges of breach of conditions and theft of a motor vehicle.