Knife-wielding man arrested peacefully

Mounties are crediting one of their own crisis negotiators with defusing a potentially deadly situation Friday in Summerland.

Police say officers were called around 8:30 a.m. to a commercial property on the 15000 block of Logie Road, where a 44-year-old man had been staying in a camper.

After being told to leave, the man “became very distraught, began causing a disturbance and threatened to harm himself with a knife,” RCMP spokesman Sgt. Jason Bayda said in a press release.

The area was subsequently cordoned off and, after officers’ efforts failed to calm the man, an RCMP crisis negotiation was called in.

“The specially trained negotiator spoke with the man at length,” said Bayda, after which the man surrendered and “was safely apprehended under the B.C. Mental Health Act.”

No indoor soccer in West Kelowna

West Kelowna’s soccer dome won’t host any kids’ soccer games this coming winter.

Directors of the West Kelowna Youth Soccer Association have decided not to run a winter program because of the pandemic.

“After reviewing the COVID-19 rules around indoor sports, the logistical issues with the dome, and the need for an unprecedented number of volunteers to run a youth soccer program, we have made the difficult decision to forego the 2021 indoor season,” the association says in a note to parents.

Registration for the 2021 outdoor season will open Jan. 1.

A fall and winter indoor soccer season will be held at Kelowna’s Capital News Centre, but only for players born in the years 2003-12. Some spots are still available; see the Central Okanagan Soccer Association website fore details.

Fire dept. warns of ‘ember showers’

With the recent Christie Mountain wildfire still fresh in people’s minds, the Penticton Fire Department is calling on city residents to get behind an effort to guard their homes against future trouble.

“Homes rarely burn down from wildfires. They burn down because of poor fire prevention management practices,” Chief Larry Watkinson said in a press release Friday.

“We need homeowners to know about the risk of ember showers, which can travel up to two kilometres and ignite your home. By educating those within our community to remove debris around their homes, we can prevent the spread of wildfire.”

Watkinson encourages people to download the FireSmart Begins at Home app, which walks people through a self-conducted home assessment. In a matter of minutes, the app will help identify specific and simple actions users can take on their properties to reduce wildfire risks.

Relevant checklists and tips can also be found at penticton.ca/firesmart or firesmartbc.ca.

Chief Louie backs Liberal Veintimilla

Clarence Louie, the influential chief of the Osoyoos Indian Band, has thrown his support behind his local Liberal candidate.

The party on Friday released a statement from Louie in which he sings the praises of Petra Veintimilla, an Oliver town councillor who is running for the Liberals in Boundary-Similkameen.

“I have been impressed by Petra and her commitment to her community, this region, and all its people. She has shown herself to be a thoughtful, hardworking and dedicated town councillor, someone truly committed to the hard work of relationship building,” Louie said in the statement.

“It’s time to engage a new generation of leaders and I am proud to endorse Petra: I have no doubt she will be a passionate and hardworking MLA who will work tirelessly for the best interests of all in this region.”

Veintimilla is looking to hold the riding for the party, following the retirement of incumbent Liberal MLA Linda Larson. The other candidates are Wexit BC’s Arlyn Greig, New Democrat Roly Russell and BC Conservative Darryl Seres.

RCMP capture violent suspect

The RCMP emergency response team captured a violent suspect Wednesday night.

““Due to the suspect’s escalating violent behaviour, covert plain clothes operators were tasked with bringing him into custody safely,” said police spokesperson Cpl. Jocelyn Noseworthy. “Those members located their target Wednesday evening in Kelowna.”

A dog team and additional officers assisted with the capture.

Police believe the suspect pointed a gun at two people on Sunday. The victims called the Mounties, who searched unsuccessfully for the suspect.

Police learned the suspect had also pointed a gun at the victims in April.

“The victims and suspect were known to each other. These are not random criminal acts,” said Noseworthy.

The 43-year-old Kelowna was to appear in court on Thursday to face numerous criminal charges.

Roof replacement costly

Replacing the roof on Peachland’s historic school building could cost four times as much as expected.

Original estimates to replace the roof of the Beach Avenue property, now used as a visitor centre, art gallery, and Boys and Girls Club, were in the range of $25,000.

But initial quotes have come in much higher, up to $90,000. Town council will decide what to do about the matter at a meeting next Tuesday.

Outstanding students

Three Okanagan College students have won Outstanding Student Awards from the Environmental Operators Certification Program.

The cash awards are presented to students who have displayed distinctive leadership and meritorious service to the water and wastewater industry.

Winners are:

— Ruben Kubbenga, who is currently working as a microbiology technologist, and plans on gaining certification as a wastewater treatment operator.  After graduating from the Water Engineering Technology program at Okanagan College, he plans on entering the Sustainable Energy Engineering program at the University of Calgary. In his spare time, Kubbenga has worked on cleaning up creeks, sampling well water, and biomonitoring Mission Creek.

— Daniel Soroka, who is completing a co-op opportunity at MetroVancouver. Once his co-op terms are completed, he plans on writing his Level I exams, and eventually would like to continue working in the industry, and possibly complete an engineering degree.  

— Peter Wilson, who plans on working towards his EOCP Level IV certification and eventually hopes to work as a plant manager or municipal management.