Members of the Independent Investigations Office scour the scene of an incident in Cranbrook on Oct. 3

Members of the Independent Investigations Office scour the scene of an incident in Cranbrook on Oct. 3

RCMP officer faces charges

A former Vernon RCMP officer has been charged in an October 2012 shooting incident of a Port Coquitlam man in Cranbrook.

  • Aug. 14, 2013 6:00 p.m.

SALLY MACDONALD

Black Press

A former Vernon RCMP officer has been charged in an October 2012 shooting incident of a Port Coquitlam man in Cranbrook.

Const. Richard Drought faces charges of intentionally discharging a firearm into a motor vehicle, knowing that another person was in the motor vehicle, and of intentionally discharging a firearm while being reckless as to the life or safety of another person.

Drought was stationed in Vernon from 2004 to 2008.

According to the statement released by the B.C. Criminal Justice Branch on Thursday, Aug. 8, the charges were laid by a senior prosecutor who doesn’t work in the Kootenays.

The man injured in the incident was Nickolas Bullock. According to RCMP statements at the time, a police officer was stationed at the southwest end of Cranbrook conducting a road block when he saw a suspect vehicle.

The officer tried to pull over the vehicle; when it did not stop, the officer gave chase.

That chase ended in a rural Cranbrook driveway. The officer allegedly discharged his firearm.

Bullock, 26, was allegedly injured but appeared in Cranbrook Provincial Court one week later.

The 17-year-old female occupant of the vehicle was not injured.

Civilian police watchdog the Independent Investigations Office was called in to investigate the police-involved shooting.

On April 3, the Independent Investigations Office forwarded a report to the Criminal Justice Branch, which they do only when they feel there may be grounds to lay charges.

Drought is slated to appear in Cranbrook Provincial Court Sept. 16.

Meanwhile, Bullock has pleaded guilty to four charges in relation to the same incident, including dangerous operation of a motor vehicle and flight from a police officer. He will be sentenced in Port Coquitlam Oct. 8.