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Suspect in Topley Landing boat theft charged with attempted murder of a police officer

Driver allegedly charged the officer in a stolen vehicle, officer fired his sidearm injuring suspect
(Black Press Media file photo)

The man charged with the attempted murder of a Houston RCMP officer remained in custody as of today following a series of court appearances since his arrest Aug. 30.

Court documents show Thomas W. Kennedy is charged with driving a Dodge pick up truck directly at Constable Steven Bruce as police attempted to stop Kennedy following a report of a break, enter and theft of a boat in the early morning hours of Aug. 30 from Spindrift Lodge on Babine Lake south of Topley Landing.

Bruce responded by firing his service pistol, injuring Kennedy in the wrist. He was taken to hospital for treatment, released and placed in police custody.

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is now investigating the direct circumstances leading to Kennedy’s injury.

Kennedy, who is due in court again today, Sept. 14, is also charged with dangerous operation of a vehicle in a manner that is dangerous to the public.

He is further charged with break and enter at Spindrift Lodge and possessing the Dodge pickup and boat and trailer knowing that the property was stolen.

A second person has also been charged in relation to the thefts and as of late last week also remained in custody.

Nicole Lencucha is also charged with break and enter of the fishing lodge and possession of the truck, boat and trailer knowing that they were stolen.

An initial RCMP release indicated police, in responding to the report of a break and enter, set up at a bridge anticipating anyone leaving the Topley Landing area would come their way.

“A vehicle approached and members noted it was towing a boat believed to be stolen from the lodge,” the Aug. 30 release stated.

“Police say that the vehicle allegedly drove towards one of the police officers who fired their service pistol. The driver of the vehicle received a non-life threatening injury.”

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is a civilian agency called in to investigate police-involved incidents resulting in harm or death.

Topley Landing is just off of Hwy 118 that runs north of Topley, which is located at the junction of Hwy 118 and Hwy 16 approximately halfway between Houston and Burns Lake.

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