Two parking meter vandals arrested in Vernon

Concerned residents’ phone calls enabled quick response to thefts downtown

Two Vernon men were arrested after vandalizing parking meters downtown.

A concerned resident alerted RCMP after witnessing one man breaking into parking meters on 30th Street around 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.

The witness continued watching the suspicious man and updated the dispatcher on the man’s location. Vernon North Okanagan RCMP were able to make an arrest within minutes of the call.

Upon arrival, police found the man had done this before. He was in violation of a previous release order’s conditions stating he can’t be within one metre of a parking meter and was prohibited from owning break-in instruments.

The 39-year-old man is facing charges of mischief and theft.

In the early morning hours of Thursday, police responded to reports of another suspicious man breaking into meters on Centennial Drive.

A resident saw the man in the area the day before and was wary of his activity.

Police arrested a 35-year-old Vernon man shortly after 4:30 a.m. He was in possession of a homemade device used to retrieve coins from meters.

He is to appear in court on charges of mischief, theft and failing to comply with a probation order.

“It takes a team effort to mitigate crime in the downtown core of Vernon. Police cannot be everywhere to see crime as it happens,” media relations officer Cpl. Tania Finn said.

“We are appreciative of those who take the time to call us when they witness a crime or observe something they feel a police officer should check out.”

Both men remain in custody until their appearances in court.

READ MORE: Earth Strike Vernon to back Wet’suwet’en people with rally

READ MORE: ‘Guy Fawkes’ maps out Vernon’s crime hot spots


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

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