6-hour standoff in Chilliwack, B.C., ends with one man dead
VANCOUVER -- One man is dead after a six-hour standoff with police in Chilliwack, B.C. Saturday night.
Chilliwack RCMP say they were called to a home in the 46000 block of Christina Drive at 5:30 p.m. Saturday to respond to a man who was distraught. When they arrived, that man fired shots at police.
The police officers were not injured, according to the Independent Investigations Office, which is now investigating the incident. According to the IIO, police were responding to a report of a man with a gun.
"After approximately six hours of attempted negotiations, shots were fired by police," the IIO said in a statement. "Advanced Life Support was called, and the man died at the scene."
In a release sent at 10 p.m. Saturday, police said the Emergency Response Team, RCMP crisis negotiators and a police helicopter were all called to the scene, which police described as "high risk."
Residents of Christina Drive were asked to stay inside their homes, and police asked the public to avoid the area and asked residents to not post details of police movements on social media. At 7:30 a.m. Sunday, RCMP told the public the incident was over.
Chilliwack RCMP said that after the Emergency Response Team and negotiators responded to the incident, there was "an interaction between the man and police" and police fired their weapons.
"The man exited the home during the interaction and then returned inside," the Mounties said in a statement. "A robot was deployed by police to safely conduct a search the home. The man was found unresponsive inside. Despite life saving measures performed by emergency medical crews at the scene he died."
In the light of day Sunday, bullet holes could be seen in the front windows of the home alongside larger holes that may have been made by police firing flash bangs and canisters of teargas into the house.
The IIO said it is now trying to figure out if it was a bullet fired by police that caused the man’s death.
“Obviously we will have to wait for the autopsy to determine the cause of death and who fired the shot that caused the death of the individual,” said Ron MacDonald, the agency’s director.
IIO investigators went door to door in the neighbourhood Sunday to find out what nearby residents saw and heard during the standoff.
“There are going to be a lot of witnesses involved here. Members of the public, as we understand it, were cautioned by police to stay in their homes so a lot of people’s attention would have been drawn to this situation,” MacDonald said.
The IIO is an independent civilian agency that investigates all police officer-related incidents in B.C. that result in serious harm or death, whether or not there is any allegation of wrongdoing.