Police concerned after man tells young girl to get into his truck in the BC Interior

For the second time this week, RCMP in the BC Interior are investigating a suspicious incident that has all the makings of a possible child abduction attempt.

The latest incident happened Tuesday afternoon in Williams Lake as a young girl was walking alone between 3-3:30 pm.

According to police, she was in the area of Proctor Street and 3 Avenue when an unknown man in a truck called her over and told her to get into his vehicle.

Fortunately, “the child did not comply and ran from home however did not immediately report the incident,” said an RCMP release.

Police provided the following description of the man who was allegedly involved:

  • Heavy
  • In his thirties
  • Fair to Medium skin
  • With red, black and blue tattoos (believed to be on his arms)
  • Short, dark brown to black hair
  • Moustache
  • Spoke English with no accent

They also provided a description of the vehicle he was driving:

  • Red and shiny with grey or silver stripe on the door
  • Appeared brand new, or had been recently been washed
  • Runs quietly
  • Large

“We are very interested in identifying and speaking with the driver of this truck to determine what his intentions were with this child,” said S/Sgt. Del Byron.

“If you were in the area of 3 Avenue and Proctor Avenue yesterday afternoon and were a witness to this incident, or have dash-cam or other surveillance video we are asking that you call us.”

Although the two incidents happened just over 100 kilometres apart on back-to-back days, the RCMP says there have been no links found between this incident and the one that occurred in Quesnel on Monday night.

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Interior minister concerned about police billing for official assistance | Yle Uutiset

Kaksi järjestyspoliisia takaapäin kuvattuna. Poliisin työssään kokema väkivalta on kasvanut. Kuvituskuva.
Most police assistance tasks are related to mental health and child protection.

Image: Eleni Paspatis / Yle

Minister of the Interior Maria Ohisalo (Green) has said that she is worried about a police decision to begin charging fees for providing backup in critical tasks related to child protection or mental health rehabilitation, among others.

Police said that as of Thursday they would begin charging fees for support provided to other authorities or individuals, which could include invoicing child protection authorities or veterinarians. The police payment is not new but has been rarely implemented in the past.

The minister said on Twitter on Thursday that she has issued an urgent order to correct the situation quickly. She added that she is concerned by feedback she has received from municipalities and child protection officials regarding police plans to bill for providing official support in such tasks.

A regulation allowing for police to charge for providing backup services has been in force since 1994, but the revenue stream has been negligible so far, the police board said.

According to the regulation, support duties that are free of charge include tasks related to the Mental Health Act, Civil Service Law, Employment Accident and Occupational Disease Act, implementation of sentences, assistance to defence forces and foreclosure situations.

Police assistance is also needed to protect health care staff in certain situations or to force open doors when child protection authorities search for missing young people, for instance.

Billing could generate millions in revenue

The police receive about 70,000 requests for official assistance each year, and about half of them will be invoiced from now on, they say.

Billing is based on costs — for instance, the hourly rate for two police officers and a car is 165 euros, and for one police officer is 70 euros.