A 23-year-old Wekweéti man is in custody after RCMP responded to a complaint about a firearm in the remote community last week.
On Wednesday, around 6 p.m., Behchoko RCMP received a call that a man was in possession of a firearm and that he posed “potential harm,” to the community, stated an RCMP news release.
The report prompted a large-scale response from RCMP, who deployed additional resources, including Police Dog Service, to Wekweéti by airplane. The plane arrived in the community around 10:45 p.m.
The male suspect was located in the community by police, but fled the scene. A loaded shotgun was retrieved by RCMP at the location the man was last seen.
Police discontinued their search after nightfall. Overnight, officers monitored a residence where the suspect was last seen.
The search for the man resumed Thursday morning with the help of Wekweéti residents who offered tips about his location throughout the day.
Acting on one of those tips, police located and arrested the male -unarmed – after stopping a vehicle around 8 p.m. Thursday evening.
The identity of the 23-year-old man has not been released by police.
He was taken into custody without incident and flown to Yellowknife on Friday, along with the responding RCMP members.
“Responses to calls for services in remote communities pose many challenges, as you can see by the assembling of a team to respond, and the need for private charter plane to access,” stated RCMP spokesperson Marie York-Condon in the news release.
“In this incident, the community of Wekweéti continued to support the RCMP and each other, throughout the event. The situation was very fluid, and the hard-work of the members on the ground, supported by the community in many ways, provided a positive result with no injury,” added York-Condon.
“We are thankful this came to a peaceful resolution and thank the community of Wekweéti.”
No charges have been laid and police are continuing to investigate the incident.