Car chase starts in Vernon, ends in Kamloops

Spike belt deployed on Trans-Canada Highway

Kamloops This Week

A man and a woman are in custody following a highway police operation that ended in Kamloops on Thursday afternoon after Mounties deployed a spike belt.

RCMP Cpl. Jodi Shelkie said the incident began when Vernon RCMP alerted their counterparts in Kamloops about a stolen vehicle heading toward the Tournament Capital.

Police deflated at least one of the vehicle’s tires with a spike belt on Highway 1 near Lafarge, but the driver kept going. After exiting on Summit Drive, Shelkie said, the vehicle was driven down Columbia Street and back onto the highway.

An RCMP airplane monitored the vehicle from the sky. Police were able to stop the car on Highway 1 near Vicars Road.

A rifle and a handgun were seized from inside the vehicle, Shelkie said, noting the incident began earlier in the day when Vernon-North Okanagan Mounties tried to stop a white pickup truck in Falkland believed to be connected to a recent series of break-and-enters in the rural area of the detachment.

“The vehicle fled from police and the occupants abandoned it on Highway 97 after a tire was flattened,” Shelkie said. “They then stole a Toyota Corolla, which had stopped on the side of the highway.”

Shelkie said attempts by police on the road and from the air to stop the car were unsuccessful as the driver fled toward Chase, then westbound on Highway 1 to Kamloops.

Shelkie said officers called off the chase, but noted the RCMP helicopter kept an eye on the car.

With the help of the eye in the sky, Kamloops Mounties were finally able to stop the vehicle.

A 35-year-old Pritchard and a 25-year-old Vernon woman were taken into custody.

Shelkie said a follow-up investigation has determined the white pickup truck was reported stolen in Vernon on Sept. 2. The two suspects have been transported to Vernon and face numerous charges, including theft of a vehicle, possession of stolen property, flight from police and possessing weapons.

Both suspects are known to police.

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