Vandals make police work easy
It’s like the Hansel and Gretel of the police beat – except these Castlegar vandals left, not bread crumbs, but rather startlingly-clear footprints in the snow, directly from the crime scene to the culprits’ door. According to RCMP Sgt. Laurel Mathew, police received a call Sunday night reporting three males on the roof of a building in the 300 block of 12Street downtown. Constables Dale Judd and Rob Gardener responded, and found tracks in the back alley behind West’s department store, where the suspects had jumped down from the building. A fresh snowfall left pristine undisturbed snow, and a clear trail of footprints away from the area.
The two officers followed the tracks until Gardener discovered a backpack with spray paint in it, then continued along the trail, which led up and down side roads until it finally ended at a residence on 9 Avenue. “Const. Judd noted a snowprint located on a windowsill leading into the garage of the home,” Mathew said. “He rang the doorbell and advised the woman who answered that either someone in the home had gone out and come back via the window, or someone had broken into the home.” “The three youths involved were quickly identified at that point, and brought down to the detachment for a conversation with Const. Judd,” Mathew said. It was later determined that a sign on Element Bar and Grill had been damaged with spray paint. Mathew said the three young males cannot be identified, as they are minors, and police have not yet determined the course of action they will take in dealing with the offence. She said it’s not often police get to ‘follow up’ on a case like this. “It’s unusual to be able to follow tracks so clearly, straight from the crime scene to the person’s house,” she said.