Eleven hour armed stand-off ends in Port Clements

  • Jan. 14, 2005 7:00 p.m.

By Heidi Bevington–RCMP from both islands’ detachments converged on a Port Clements home Thursday evening, after a man started shooting in a residential neighbourhood.
“In the evening about 9 pm I heard these shots being fired,” said Colin Traplin who lives across the road from the home where the incident took place.
“Shortly after, the police arrived and shut down Bayview Ave. from our house to the museum until they got things under control,” he added. He said he never felt in any danger. He said several people who share the house with the man were contacted and told not to go there.
Urs Thomas of the Golden Spruce motel said his wife was out walking the family dogs around 10 pm. She headed down Bayview Drive, and when she wanted to go back police stopped her. “She had to stay at my friend’s house,” said Mr. Thomas. About 1 am Mr. Thomas went down to the police barricade to see what was going on. Three police cars were parked across the road. When he asked how long it would take to clear things up, the officer said it could take 15 minutes or 15 hours.
Port Clements Elementary School principal Claudette Lavoie said she received a call from police about 6:20 am warning her that the school would have to be closed if the incident continued. She planned to contact all parents at 7 am and had a plan to contact those even those without phones, but between 6:45 and 6:50 am the police called to say the matter was resolved. “Children would not have been going to school if the incident had continued,” said Ms Lavoie.
Masset police said they received a call at about 9 pm Thursday evening, and determined that a lone gunman had been shooting dozens of rounds of shotgun and rifle ammunition at the rear of his house. Eleven hours later, police finally arrested him. They seized five rifles and shotguns along with a substantial amount of ammunition.
The Terrace RCMP Emergency Response Team were en route from Prince Rupert to Port at first light Friday morning, but stayed on the mainland after local police were able to talk the man into surrendering.
The 45-year old man, who recently moved to Port Clements, is now in police custody in Masset and is expected to face a number of charges for firearms offences.