Various government enforcement agencies are joining forces to conduct snowmobile patrols in various areas of the Sea to Sky corridor.
Whistler and Pemberton RCMP, the Conservation Officer Service, BC Parks and the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations are all involved in the joint patrols.
RCMP Staff Sgt. Steve LeClair said all agencies will be out enforcing the Motor Vehicle (All Terrain) Act, the Liquor Control Act, the Parks Act and the Forest and Range Practices Act.
LeClair said all snowmobiles must be registered, there will be no tolerance for the consumption of liquor and sledders must be aware of the areas of Crown land where winter recreation motorized use is prohibited.
Whistler RCMP has two snowmobiles and some members are trained to conduct the patrols of the backcountry in the Rutherford and Brandywine areas.
“We will be doing patrols as time permits,” LeClair said. “We have been out several times already and plan on continuing those patrols.”
Overdue skiers found
On Monday evening (Feb. 25) at 7:20 p.m. two skiers were reported overdue to RCMP. LeClair said a complainant was last in contact with the pair at around noon that day and indicated she was unsure where they were skiing, but said they might have gone out of bounds near Disease Ridge on Blackcomb.
LeClair said police were informed that one of the pair was an experienced backcountry skier, however they had limited food, water and clothing. Their vehicle was located in Day Lot 1 and Whistler Search and Rescue and Whistler Blackcomb ski patrol were notified.
A search began in the morning and at 8:30 a.m. SAR located the pair in the Decker area and transported them out by helicopter. The 42-year-old Squamish man and 27-year-old Vancouver male were uninjured.
Another report of rental fraud over Craigslist was reported to RCMP last Wednesday (Feb. 20).
LeClair said the victim reported sending $539 through an e-transfer to the suspect’s account at the beginning of January. RCMP continue to investigate.
Meanwhile, several fraud reports were made in relation to the same name advertising rental accommodation on Craigslist.
The first incident was reported to RCMP last Friday (Feb. 22) by a real estate agent in Whistler. LeClair said the agent was contacted by a person looking to rent a property in order to confirm that unit was actually for rent. The real estate agent contacted the owner to discover the property was for sale, but had not been put up for rent.
“They did their due diligence,” LeClair said.
The second complaint involved rental fraud at an address in the 4800 block of Casabella Crescent. A renter from Olympia, Wash. rented the unit through a Craigslist listing and transferred $1,200 US to the suspect through PayPal.
LeClair said the name the suspect used was the same as the prior incident and other Craigslist frauds.
“Police are contacting Craigslist to get the ad removed and the name flagged,” he added.
A possible debit card fraud was reported to police last Thursday (Feb. 21). LeClair said the complainant noticed approximately $100 withdrawn three times from their chequing account.
“The investigation continues to find out if her card has actually been skimmed,” LeClair said.
Cops called for fight
RCMP were called to the Whistler Cay subdivision on Monday (Feb. 25) when a resident saw two males fighting in the street.
LeClair said before officers arrived one of the men fled, and the other remained on the scene. He said police were advised by that male that the other man was the ex-boyfriend of the girl he is currently seeing. LeClair said the male indicated the other man saw the two of them together, became angry and attacked them.
The ex-boyfriend was contacted by RCMP and turned himself in later that day and police are recommending charges of assault against the 25-year-old Whistler resident.
RCMP received a report of a stolen truck on Saturday morning (Feb. 23) at 2:30 a.m.
LeClair said the owner parked the vehicle in an underground parking lot in the Village earlier in the evening, but when they returned it was gone. He added the 2013 truck was left unlocked with the keys in the console inside.
The very same day it was spotted by police in the West Vancouver with licence plates that were stolen in Squamish.
“Police officers approached the vehicle and the lone occupant fled on foot and was later apprehended,” LeClair said, adding all the owner’s personal belongings in the vehicle were also recovered. The suspect is a 30-year-old Whistler female who is facing charges of possession of stolen property and possession of a controlled substance.
Also on Thursday, LeClair said at 3:10 a.m. RCMP were informed of a vehicle on the side of Highway 99 near the Alpine Meadows, with the driver slumped over at the wheel.
He said officers attended and when they approached the vehicle to speak with the driver detected an odour of liquor. The 33-year-old Whistler male failed the roadside screening device and was issued an immediate roadside driving prohibition of 90 days and his vehicle will be impounded for 30 days.
A roadside safety checkstop on Lorimer Road and Highway 99 this weekend resulted in a man being charged with driving while under the influence of drugs.
LeClair said the vehicle was stopped at 12:30 a.m. on Sunday (Feb. 24) and officers noted the smell of fresh marijuana.
He said the driver, a 37-year-old Whistler male, was arrested for possession of a controlled substance and 15 grams of marijuana found in his jacket pocket.
“He also admitted to having a beer earlier and that he had smoked marijuana half an hour previous,” LeClair said.
The driver passed the roadside screening test, but was given a standardized field sobriety test by another officer to test for the influence of drugs and did not pass.
LeClair said the driver received an immediate roadside 24-hour driving suspension.
“Don’t drug and drive,” he said.