CRD directors look for solutions to growing rural crime trend

“The bulk of these break and enters seem to be drug-fuelled,” CRD board chair Margo Wagner

Political leaders within the Cariboo Regional District are discussing what can be done about the growing crime trends in parts of the region.

Most recently, the communities of McLeese Lake and Lac La Hache have held meetings to discuss the problems in their areas hosted by CRD directors Steve Forseth, Area D, and Al Richmond, Area G, with another meeting scheduled in McLeese Lake this week.

“The CRD board discussed this matter at our meeting at Tatla Lake at length and we have agreed to invite the RCMP detachment commanders from Quesnel, Williams Lake and 100 Mile House to a future CRD board meeting to further understand the topic of property theft in the rural areas and formulate an action plan for lobbying both the B.C. and federal governments,” Forseth said Tuesday.

RELATED: RCMP make multiple arrests and recover eight stolen vehicles, thanks to public observations

Forseth is hosting a second meeting aimed at tackling the growing crime problem in the rural community.

The meeting is scheduled to get underway Wednesday evening, Sept. 18 at 7 p.m. at the McLeese Lake Community Hall and will include Williams Lake RCMP Insp. Jeff Pelley, who will be on hand to answer questions, said Forseth.

“I am hoping that residents can have a candid chat with the RCMP as to what actions they can take to make their community of McLeese Lake a safer place to live. Residents themselves requested the meeting following the incident during the Labour Day long weekend,” Forseth said.

READ MORE: EDITORIAL: It’s a real crime

On Aug. 30, a Williams Lake RCMP investigation resulted in the discovery of a property of interest on Lagerquist Road where several allegedly stolen recreation vehicles were recovered. Two suspects are facing charges in connection with the crimes.

Last month Richmond hosted a community meeting in Lac La Hache with 100 Mile House RCMP on hand due to growing safety concerns near their local elementary school.

CRD board chair Margo Wagner said in future meetings they hope to look at ideas such as increasing policing manpower or other strategies in rural areas to combat what appears to be increased criminal activity.

“The bulk of these break and enters seem to be drug-fuelled,” Wagner said.

“If there’s something we can do as a community as a whole with local government together, we feel that is the most beneficial way forward.”

READ MORE: Growing safety concerns for children spark public meeting at Lac La Hache with CRD and RCMP


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