VANDERHOOF, B.C. — A senior RCMP officer says Mounties and office staff dived for cover on Thursday in Vanderhoof, B.C., as bullets smashed through their detachment office windows.
Chief Supt. Warren Brown of the B.C. RCMP north district says more than a dozen employees were working when multiple rounds were fired from a rifle.
"I am told that bullets from a rifle smashed through exterior windows striking walls, equipment, and flying past work stations where police officers and office staff sat," he said in a statement Friday.
"Terrible accounts where our employees were deafened by gun fire, could smell burning gun powder, and threw themselves on the ground to avoid being shot."
He said reasons for the shooting "may become clearer in the following days through the ongoing investigation," but it "is believed that this was a targeted attack on the RCMP."
"An incident like this is really something that happens rarely and regardless of how well we are trained, with the serious level of threat and fluid mayhem, it is remarkable to believe no one was hurt and the suspect was arrested safely," Brown added. "Really the best possible outcome."
No injuries were reported.
The Mounties said they had responded to reports of a person with a long gun just after noon. Before making an arrest, the RCMP said a lone male suspect, considered armed and dangerous, was believed to be driving around the community in a white Ford pickup truck with an extended cab.
The RCMP said officers apprehended the suspect about an hour later following a brief chase, in which one police vehicle was rammed.
As the incident unfolded, Brown said citizens called 911 with information that led to the suspect's capture.
"The support and co-operation from the community at large was overwhelming," he said.
The RCMP has asked the public to provide investigators with any video they may have taken of the shooting.
The detachment in Vanderhoof was closed to the public Friday while a forensic examination was being conducted. But Brown said there would be no disruption in police service.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 26, 2021.
The Canadian Press