Despite a few scuffles breaking out, police are saying Peachfest was a family-friendly affair overall.
At 11:45 p.m. on Aug. 7 there was a bear spray incident reported at Gyro Park. Police were told the suspects fled towards the court house. When located, the victim told police an unknown woman approached her and sprayed her in the face with bear spray and stole her purse. Police located a male who smelled of bear spray. He was arrested, but denied any involvement and was eventually released. The purse was later located and was missing $150.
Another incident broke out on the evening of Aug. 8 when police were called to Gyro Park and saw multiple individuals who were injured after suspects were swinging chains with a large metal locks on the end. Three suspects were taken into custody and two were taken to the hospital with minor injuries to their faces. There were multiple witnesses with conflicting stories and police said that all involved were intoxicated. One individual was charged with a breach of probation and one individual was charged with possession of cocaine. Police found that the individuals, who were all in their late teens, early 20s, were from the area.
“There’s crowds of local kids and 99 per cent of those kids are just down there to watch what’s happening. There’s a group that mix drugs and alcohol late in the evening when those tourist families aren’t out anymore,” Penticton RCMP Cpl. Don Wrigglesworth said. “They are mixing alcohol and drugs and with that comes some violence. In general though I’d like to say overall the weekend was fantastic. You could just feel the atmosphere of family.”
The number of incidents police respond to during Peachfest is on a downward trend over the past four years.
“I think in total our file count, from four years ago working it, was down,” Wrigglesworth said.
Police reported that 12 individuals were taken into custody for drunk and disorderly conduct on Aug. 7 and 16 individuals on Aug. 8. Most were released after they had sobered up, but some were charged with breaches of probation.