A heavy police presence blanketed South Surrey near the Pacific Highway border Tuesday afternoon, after a traveller reportedly pointed a gun at a border officer and fled northbound on 176 Street.
According to a Surrey RCMP news release, the incident unfolded at approximately 2:40 p.m. July 5, when police were advised by the Canada Border Services Agency about a vehicle that had “failed to report” at the crossing.
“The suspect in the vehicle had been allegedly in possession of a firearm,” the release states.
One witness told CTV News that she was at a border booth when she heard yelling, followed by several popping sounds. She then saw more than a dozen border guards running toward a car, which sped off.
Officers responding – one witness reported on Twitter that she saw “20 RCMP chasing someone to the US Border” – followed the vehicle, and the suspect headed back for the border.
“We were able to engage and follow this vehicle, and he ended up back at this location he came through,” Sgt. Alanna Dunlop told Peace Arch News Wednesday, noting the incident up to the arrest unfolded over a course of about 18 minutes.
Dunlop said police are still working to confirm if the driver – an American citizen was ultimately taken into custody just inside the U.S. – had a weapon.
She confirmed a road closure on 192 Street between 16 and 24 avenues shortly after the arrest was connected to the investigation.
“It did have to do with collecting evidence,” Dunlop said, noting the road was reopened at 6:30 p.m.
While there were reports on Twitter that the driver had “tossed several firearms and ammo on the road,” Dunlop would not confirm what evidence was collected.
Surrey RCMP is leading the investigation.