Merritt RCMP Detachment (RCMP photo)
MERRITT, B.C. – A man drove to the Merritt RCMP detachment Saturday, got out of his vehicle and started shooting.
According to Dawn Roberts, Director in charge of BC RCMP Communications, on Saturday afternoon at approximately 4:43 pm, a man pulled up into a parking lot adjacent to the Merritt RCMP Detachment. The man got out of the vehicle and shots were fired. When the officers heard the gunshots, they came out of the detachment, saw the man and took cover.
Shortly after, the man was located deceased. No other individuals were injured.
Merritt residents say they heard the police yell “take cover” and yell at the kids at the nearby skate park to run.
The area has been cordoned off in order to support the investigation. Public access to the detachment will be limited.
The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) BC has been called and is now investigating to determine whether police actions or inactions are linked to the man’s death. The IIO is a civilian-led police oversight agency responsible for conducting investigations into incidents of death or serious harm that may have been the result of the actions of a police officer, whether on or off duty.
As the matter is now under investigation by the IIO BC, no further information will be released by police. Police say that all aspects and circumstances of this incident will be the subject of independent investigation by the IIO BC.
The IIO is asking any person who saw, heard or recorded the incident to contact the IIO Witness Line toll-free at 1-855-446-8477 or via the contact form on the iiobc.ca website.
The Merritt RCMP Detachment serves Merritt, Lower Nicola, Shulus Indian Reserve, Upper Nicola Indian Reserve, Douglas Lake Indian Reserve, Douglas Lake, Shackan Indian Reserve, and Lower Nicola Indian Reserve.