More police resources arrived on scene at an apartment complex on Okanagan Avenue Monday, Sept. 14, 2020, just before 6 p.m. (Roger Knox - Vernon Morning Star)

Fire sparked at Okanagan apartment in manhunt for wanted man

Sighting of man matching description of man wanted in Shuswap stabbing case leads to heavy police presence

The hunt for an Enderby man linked to a stabbing in the Shuswap led police to a Vernon neighbourhood Monday evening, but no arrests were made as a result of the hours-long investigation.

Vernon North Okanagan RMCP descended on an apartment complex located in the 3400 block of Okanagan Avenue in the Mission Hill Sept. 14, around 3:30 p.m.

Officers who had been in the neighbourhood on an unrelated matter spotted a man matching the description of Alexander Boucher, of Enderby, entering one of the units at the Regency Gardens off 36th Street.

Police set up a containment area and called the RCMP Southeast District Emergency Response Team to assist.

An estimated 12-15 unmarked and marked vehicles were on scene with around 20 to 25 officers, some clad in camouflage.

Several apartment residents and neighbours were outside watching the action unfold.

One neighbour told the Morning Star they were evacuated from a neighbouring unit around 4:15 p.m.

“We were just sitting at home when we looked out our deck and saw police officers with guns,” the resident who didn’t wish to be identified said. “They left and more officers came. Then there was a knock on our door. It was the police saying we had to leave.”

“To ensure the safety of other building residents, the RCMP Critical Incident Commander ordered the immediate evacuation of adjacent apartments,” RCMP Southeast District spokesman Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey said Wednesday, Sept. 16.

When police made entry into the apartment, tactical ERT officers deployed a distraction inside the apartment which sparked a small fire in a storage room.

Officers discovered the fire upon entrance and investigators believe the device used by police sparked some loose debris.

“Vernon Fire Rescue Services crews provided over-watch support as they managed to contain the small fire to the single unit.”

RCMP Police Dog Services were also on hand during the hours-long investigation that resulted in no arrests.

“Vernon RCMP, who provided support to the evacuees at the scene wish to extend its appreciation for the patience and understanding of all those impacted by the unfolding situation,” Cpl. O’Donaghey said.

RCMP continue to search for both Boucher and Terrance Jones, of Edmonton, Alta. Members of the public are warned not to approach either man if spotted and are urged to call 911 immediately. Both men are wanted on charges of attempted murder for a stabbing incident that occurred in Blind Bay on Aug. 16.

READ MORE: Police request public’s help in locating men charged in Shuswap stabbing

Anyone with information on the current possible whereabouts of Boucher or Jones is urged to contact their local police of jurisdiction or the Salmon Arm RCMP General Investigation Section (GIS) at 250-832-6044. To remain completely anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

READ MORE: ‘Come out with your hands up,’ Vernon RCMP heard shouting

READ MORE: UPDATE: Vernon RCMP converge in search for wanted suspect


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

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A heavy police presence is visible at a Vernon apartment complex on Okanagan Avenue Monday, Sept. 14, 2020. (Roger Knox - Vernon Morning Star)

The view from a neighbour’s patio window as several Vernon North Okanagan RCMP officers descend on a unit in a Mission Hill apartment complex Monday, Sept. 14, 2020. (Contributed)

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