A man has been arrested and a Keremeos RCMP officer is recovering after allegedly being stabbed by a man suffering a mental health crisis.
Just after 2 a.m. on April 4, 2022, a frontline officer from the Keremeos RCMP was called to a report of a disturbance. The caller reported a man, who was known to her, was outside of her residence screaming for help and was suffering a mental health crisis.
The officer arrived and was speaking with complainant, when the man arrived and made self-harm comments then fled into the residence. The officer pursued, located the man, and began attempts to de-escalate the situation.
The man stabbed the officer, and despite being seriously injured the officer was able to gain control of the man and take him into custody. The officer drove himself, and the man to a local area hospital where he was met by back-up police officers.
The officer was treated for a serious, but non-life threatening stab wound, and has since been released from hospital. He is, and will continue to be supported by the RCMP.
The man was initially brought to the Penticton RCMP where he was processed and then taken to the hospital under provisions of the Mental Health Act where he remains under medical care. He is facing potential charges including assault with a weapon.
Superintendent Brian Hunter, officer-in-charge of the Penticton South Okanagan Similkameen Regional RCMP states,
It is important to me that the public understand the risks our officers take every day in dealing with all kinds of people, and the elevated risk that is associated in dealing with those who are suffering mental health crisis. In this case, the man is now receiving the help he so requires, and we will allow the court to determine how best we move forward. This could have been a very different result for both the officer and this man, had this officer not had the will to survive, and fight through injury to get himself and the accused to care.