Salt Spring RCMP Community Report - 2021, 1st Quarter Statistics

Salt Spring RCMP responded to 646 calls from January 1 2021 – March 31 2021, including, but not limited to, 5 child pornography investigations, 8 sexual assaults, 139 mental health complaints, various traffic violations and multiple COVID-19 complaints. 305 Foot Patrols in Ganges and Centennial Park and 85 Licenced Premises Checks were conducted during this period.

Salt Spring RCMP are asking residents to be mindful of online and social media safety: naked pictures or videos sent to an individual or a website can immediately be placed on the internet for all to see, or for sex-based extortion (“sex-tortion”) by the recipient. Threats to post sexual photos/videos to all the contacts on a person’s Facebook page have been made to Salt Spring Island residents. Also, numerous online scams have been reported to Salt Spring RCMP of animals purchased over the internet and monies paid, but the animals are never sent. Police encourage residents to remain aware of fraudsters and online cheats.

Some of the calls of the last few months include the following:

January 2021:

  • A COVID-19 ticket was issued for $2,300.00 after an illegal gathering was held
  • A male who was on court-ordered conditions to not be in the Province of BC was found and arrested on Salt Spring; the male was also arrested for two acts of Indecent Exposure and an Assault that also occurred on Salt Spring
  • Multiple abandoned campers and various vehicles were towed and subsequently taken to a Salvage Yard for destruction
  • A male who erected a tent and began camping on BC Ferry property was arrested for outstanding warrants from Victoria
  • Police were requested to conduct a Well-Being check on an individual; police were asked to go to their residence and “have a cup of tea with them”

February 2021:

  • The owner of a vacant lot on Salt Spring reported to police that unknown persons had cut down hundreds of trees on their property; police attended and observed multiple buildings that had been started using the fallen trees as walls and rafters. It is believed that multiple people were planning on building illegal cabins and squatting on private property (See images below)
  • Ecological Reserves on Salt Spring has been met with unknown persons removing gates/locks/signage/boulders for individuals’ own access and land use; police continue to investigate
  • A report of a multi-child sexual assault was reported to police; the investigation is continuing
  • Police received a report of a male spray-painting traffic signs near downtown Ganges; the male has now been identified
  • Police initiated an investigation into an allegation of child abuse on Salt Spring
  • Salt Spring RCMP responded to a male who was high on drugs and armed with knives and a baseball bat wanting to kill people; members responded and took the male into custody without violence
  • An elderly female who could not remember her name, address, phone number or friends was located by police and returned to her residence
  • Two males broke into an unlocked Salt Spring residence; one local male was arrested and a warrant is being sought for the other off-Island male
  • Salt Spring RCMP responded to a local ferry for a male on board with a knife who wanted to die; police responded and apprehended the male before he could hurt himself, others or the police. He was then taken to Lady Minto Hospital for assessment

March 2021:

  • Police responded to a report of a young male who allegedly advertised he had multiple properties on Salt Spring and was willing to rent them out; police attended the youth’s only residence and discussed with him the legalities of asking women to send naked photos/videos of themselves to ensure their approved tenancy
  • Police responded to a report of a naked male throwing street signs at passing cars on Lower Ganges Road; police attended and, after discussion, the male donned his clothes and left the area peacefully
  • A cell phone was stolen from an unlocked car in downtown Ganges
  • By court order, Salt Spring RCMP assisted with removing a child from a parent
  • Police responded to a male known to police who had been banned from numerous businesses on Salt Spring for refusing to wear a mask while shopping; the situation was mediated and the male left the property
  • Salt Spring RCMP arrested an older male for sexual assaults, after he allegedly exploited the needs of young women wanting housing on Salt Spring
  • Salt Spring RCMP assisted the SPCA with an animal negligence investigation
  • Salt Spring RCMP assisted the BC Coroner’s Service with found human remains within the SSI area; the area is a possible burial site and is not believed to be suspicious. The BCCS has maintained conduct of the investigation
  • An Impaired driver was caught and his Driver’s Licence suspended
  • Reports of a suspicious male walking through various properties resulted in two foot chases and a 90-minute search of various woods & properties; the male was located and arrested by Salt Spring RCMP. Break & Enter and Theft at various locations were able to be attributed to the arrested male
  • Police responded to a gun call in Ganges Harbour where a shotgun was being fired at clay targets near vessels and Island residences. Police spoke with the owner about the importance of shooting at safe distances and gun safety

RCMP are reminding residents that crime, violence and illicit drug use still occur here on Salt Spring; also, mental health calls on Salt Spring are higher per capita than on Vancouver Island, and property crime, including Theft (whether theft of animals or theft of vehicles/boats), Break & Enters, and Mischief continue to happen. Residents are encouraged to remain vigilant in locking their residences and their vehicle doors and to not leave their keys in the vehicle ignition.

Illegal structure on vacant lot.

Illegal structure on vacant lot.

Illegal structure on vacant lot.

Cut trees on vacant lot.

Illegal structure on vacant lot.

Damaged street sign.

April 29, 2021 1:53 PM

  • Avatar Nadia Kozak says:

    I'm not condoning criminal activity, however, I can't help but point out that certain types of crime are not so much the product of deviancy or malicious intent as they are the result of social inequality (i.e. trying to build a shelter, experiencing a mental health crisis). The police system is a product of colonial capitalism that exists to serve and protect the interests of the propertied class, not the disadvantaged, and our society continues to become more divided and unequal.