A man who barricaded himself inside an Eagle Bay residence in December and set several fires, including one that burnt the home to the ground, remains in hospital.
On his release, he will be charged with uttering threats and arson, says RCMP Cpl. Dan Moskaluk.
At about 10 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 20, Salmon Arm RCMP responded to a report of a disturbance at a home in the Eagle Bay area.
Police arrived on scene to find an adult male and female had safely left the residence where an adult male resident had armed himself with knives.
The man refused police instructions to leave the home and a neighbouring residence was evacuated in order to safely secure the area, Moskaluk said.
“Throughout the course of the standoff, RCMP officers dialogued with the man who threatened to harm himself and police,” Moskaluk wrote in a Dec. 21 media release.
“During the course of the incident, the man smashed out several windows of the residence and then set the home on fire and refused to leave the residence.”
Police officers extinguished the fires three times and asked the Eagle Bay Volunteer Fire Department to stand by.
Each time the man briefly exited the home, he threatened RCMP officers with knives.
Eventually the man set a large fire which quickly engulfed the residence.
“RCMP officers had to make several attempts to pull the uncooperative man from the blaze and succeeded when the man tried to crawl out of a very small window,” said Moskaluk.
The man was physically uninjured when he was taken into custody, says Moskaluk, and was immediately transported to a medical facility for care.
None of the officers were injured as a result of the incident.
Columbia Shuswap Regional District Regional Fire Chief Kenn Mount says the RCMP request for assistance was received at 1:53 a.m. Dec. 21.
“The Eagle Bay Volunteer Fire Department was advised there was an issue at a residence that required a fire department to be on scene,” says Mount. “We couldn’t suppress the fire until we got the OK from the RCMP, after they got the man out.”
Because the police had set up perimeter lines, the fire department had to stage at the Eagle Bay Firehall, which is less than a kilometre away.
“We began suppressing at 2:25 a.m. and by that time it was fully involved,” said Mount, noting 10 Eagle Bay volunteer firefighters got help in the form of a water tender and three firefighters from the Shuswap Volunteer Fire Department.
It took three hours to put the fire out and firefighters were back on site in daylight to do salvage work.
Emergency Social Services was called in to assist the displaced property owner and occupants of the rental home.