RCMP have a man in custody after a series of fires around the Okanagan River Channel Sunday. Photos courtesy Skylar Noe-Vack

RCMP arrest possible arsonist in Penticton

Four suspicious fires Sunday near the Okanagan River Channel

Penticton RCMP have a man in custody after a series of grass fires broke out on late Sunday (Aug. 12) in the Okanagan River Channel area.

At about 5:30 p.m. yesterday the Penticton Fire Department and RCMP were dispatched to a report of a fire having been lit near Eckhardt Avenue and the Channel Parkway.

The witness who called the fire in said he observed a man lighting the fire. He was described as wearing all black and carrying a bag, and the witness said he saw the man running south on the west side of the Channel Parkway trail.

“We had three fires on the channel and we had one fire on the KVR Trail, on Penticton Indian Band Land, not far from the channel,” said PFD Captain Dennis Smith. “Our guys noticed him standing there, watching the fourth fire. We let the police know, and they had him in custody pretty quickly after that.”

Related: RCMP arrest possible arsonist in Penticton

Const. James Grandy said when they arrived on the scene, officers saw another fire starting nearby, just south of the first one. While patrolling the area for the suspect, officers overheard a man cheering and then saw the man being pursued by a firefighter.

After a short foot pursuit, officers arrested the suspect and found he was carrying a lighter and balled-up paper towel.

“At this time, the suspect remains in custody as the investigation continues. The RCMP is requesting anyone who may have observed this incident, to call the Penticton RCMP, 250-492-4300,” said Grandy.

Smith said the cause of the fires is suspicious, and the investigation is in RCMP hands. He adds that the fire danger remains high throughout the region.

“We have a wildland interface all around our city, and even within our city. It doesn’t take much for a little fire to turn into a big fire in a hurry, with disastrous results, as we have seen across the country,” said Smith.


Steve Kidd
Senior reporter, Penticton Western News
Email me or message me on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Just Posted

Open burning permitted again in Kamloops Fire Centre

Low fire rating prompts decision throughout Kamloops Fire Centre

B.C. Rural Party co-founder rebukes pro-NDP accusation

Telkwa Mayor Darcy Repen disputes being NDP campaign supporter

Juno nominated artist performing at LUNA in Revelstoke Sept. 29

Cris Derksen is an Indigenous cellist and was nominated for her album Orchestral Powwow

Glimpses of Revelstoke’s past for Sept.

120 Years Ago: Revelstoke Herald, September 17, 1898 A freight boat that… Continue reading

Covered in mud at the Revelstoke Women’s Enduro

108 women rode in the annual Revelstoke Women’s Enduro race on Saturday.… Continue reading

VIDEO: Messages of hope, encouragement line bars of B.C. bridge

WARNING: This story contains references to suicide and may not be appropriate for all audiences.

Fresh-faced Flames fend off Canucks 4-1

Vancouver drops second straight NHL exhibition contest

VIDEO: B.C. deer struggles with life-preserver caught in antlers

Campbell River resident captures entangled deer on camera

Scheer pushes Trudeau to re-start Energy East pipeline talks

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer questioned the Prime Minister over Trans Mountain project

Mistaken identity: Missing dog claimed in Moose Jaw belongs to another family

Brennen Duncan was reunited with a white Kuvasz that was found in Saskatchewan

Abandoned kitten safe and sound thanks to B.C. homeless man

‘Jay’ found little black-and-white kitten in a carrier next to a dumpster by a Chilliwack pet store

Police chief defends controversial marijuana seizure

Advocates said cannabis was part of an opioid-substitution program in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside

Trans Mountain completes Burrard Inlet spill exercise

Training required, some work continues on pipeline expansion

Supporters of B.C. man accused of murdering Belgian tourist pack courtoom

Family and friends of Sean McKenzie, 27, filled the gallery for brief court appearance in Chilliwack

Most Read