Off-duty Vernon RCMP inspector helps nab alleged fraud suspects

Two suspects chose the wrong Vernon store to allegedly attempt to use a fraudulent or stolen credit or debit card

Two suspects chose the wrong Vernon store to allegedly attempt to use a fraudulent or stolen credit or debit card.

A 31-year-old Penticton man was in M&M Meats in the Vernon Square Mall on Saturday, attempting to purchase $400 worth of meats.

Also in the store at the time, on his day off, was Vernon RCMP Insp. Jim McNamara.

“Insp. McNamara noticed the individual attempt to purchase the large order but kept having issues with the debit card,” said Vernon RCMP spokesperson Gord Molendyk.

“The inspector felt things did not add up so, from a safe distance away from the store, he called on-duty officers to come check them out.”

McNamara, still a safe distance away, kept an eye on the suspect’s vehicle as he waited for uniformed officers to arrive.

The suspect vehicle, with two occupants, was checked a block away at Red Top Grocery.

“It turns out the Jeep Cherokee was stolen from Penticton,” said Molendyk.

The Penticton man was remanded in custody and was slated to appear in Vernon Provincial Court Monday.

A 32-year-old woman from Penticton, arrested with the vehicle, was released on a promise to appear in court on April 2.

The incident remains under investigation.