Video surveillance footage screen shot of arson suspect as seen on Sept. 25, immediately following the commission of the alleged arson incident. - Image: RCMP

Police get public’s help to nab suspected arsonist

Kelowna RCMP released a picture of suspect and not long thereafter a tip led to his arrest

A 34-year-old South Okanagan man is in police custody after RCMP, the media and the public combined to identify an alleged arsonist.

Kelowna RCMP are thanking the public and the media for their help in identifying and ultimately tracking down an arson suspect, whose image was circulated in the media, after he allegedly lit a fire late Monday morning in Kelowna.

“Not long after police released the suspect images to the media, an employee of a local Kelowna business immediately recognized the male suspect, as an individual who frequented their establishment,” said RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey.

“RCMP officers were tipped earlier this morning and caught up to the suspect who was spotted by the public. He was taken into police custody near the intersection of Gordon Drive and Harvey Avenue.”

This past Monday after 11 a.m., Kelowna RCMP received several calls from the public, each to report witnessing a male allegedly igniting a fire at the corner of Springfield Road and Burtch Road in Kelowna. The suspect reportedly fled east along Springfield Road, until he cut through a business parking lot on the south side of the roadway and into an adjacent orchard.

On Tuesday police released images of the suspect fleeing the alleged arson scene, they say were captured on CCTV video surveillance in the vicinity of the crime.

The suspect faces potential charges and remains in police custody at this time.