Kamloops RCMP probing latest in series of shoplifting/pepper spray incidents

The most recent attack occurred on Jan. 5, following similar incidents on Jan. 1 and Dec. 31.

Kamloops Mounties are dealing with yet another shoplifting incident in which the thief used pepper or bear spray on employees during his escape.

The latest incident occurred on Tuesday, Jan. 5, at about 6:30 p.m. at a business in the 500-block of Notre Dame Drive in Sahali. The 500-block is home to the Columbia Square shopping centre, which includes stores such as Bed, Bath and Beyond, Bulk Barn, Toys R Us, Pennington’s and Carter’s/Oshkosh.

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Const. Crystal Evelyn said a man in a blond wig and mask entered the store, appeared to shop, then tried to leave the store with unpaid merchandise. When an employee attempted to stop the man from leaving, the suspect used a can of bear spray on the employee.

The suspect is white and between 20 and 30 years of age. Along with the wig and mask, he was wearing a white T-shirt over a black long-sleeved shirt and camouflage plants
. He left through the back door of the store, running to a parking lot on Summit Drive, where he sped away in a grey SUV. No licence plate number was captured.

Anybody with information on the incident is asked to call Kamloops RCMP at 250-828-3000.

There have been at least three previous incidents recently in which men stealing from or robbing stores had or used pepper spray.

On Jan. 2, at 6:10 p.m., two men robbed a business in the 1200-block of Summit Drive in Sahali, with one man was armed with a knife and a second man holding bear spray, which was not used.

On Jan. 1, another pepper-spraying incident occurred at the Winners store in Southgate, where a man sprayed employees at just after 5 p.m. after attempting to steal clothes.

On Dec. 31, a man who stole from the Home Hardware store in Westsyde pepper sprayed two employees as he fled from the business.

© Kamloops This Week



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