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Man uses martial arts training to neutralize a violent car thief in Kelowna

The man trained at Lake Country Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Jiu-jitsu training reportedly saved a man’s life during an attack with a car-jacking suspect in Kelowna.

The Lake Country Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu gym is where a local man learned how to defend himself from a “near-death situation” on March 7, according to Donavin Scott, the owner and instructor of the gym.

Names have been redacted as the case is before the courts.

Inspector Adam MacIntosh said that Kenneth Patrick Morrison was allegedly driving a stolen vehicle when he crashed in Glenmore at approximately 8 a.m. on March 7.

The suspect then reportedly attempted to take another vehicle by force from a jiu-jitsu-trained Good Samaritan that had stopped to assist in the crash.

Morrison pulled a gun on the man and when the firearm misfired, the Lake Country martial artist’s “jiu-jitsu just kicked in automatically,” said Scott.

Scott said that his student called him after the incident to thank him for the life-saving training.

According to Scott, his student put the known violent offender in a chokehold to neutralize the situation, before bear spray was deployed at him.

The assailant then stole a different truck and fled the scene before being apprehended by the RCMP in West Kelowna, said Inspector MacIntosh.

Morrison, the suspect, is in custody and is facing a charge of attempted murder.

The investigation is ongoing but it is not Morrison’s first time being involved in vehicular theft.

In 2017, Morrison pleaded guilty to vehicle theft, evading police, dangerous driving, driving while disqualified and four counts of leaving the scene of an accident after stealing a cleaning van in Saskatchewan, according to the Regina Leader-Post. A Regina provincial court judge sentenced Morrison to time served.

During his hearing, Morrison offered an apology to the court for his actions stating, “I am now seeking and willing to accept any help I need to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again.”

Scott said that he instructs his students to be careful and to only act in self defence. The gym does not offer self defence courses but is open to anyone hoping to learn martial arts.

In 2021, the gym was awarded the Business Leader of the Year and focuses on being a fun and inclusive place to train.

Scott said that everyone is welcome at his gym, regardless of their fitness or ability level. He runs family classes where parents and children can train together, beginner and child classes and trains advanced athletes.


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Jacqueline Gelineau

About the Author: Jacqueline Gelineau

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