METRO Vancouver Transit Police on Tuesday arrested a man with alleged gang affiliation who was in possession of a loaded firearm in a busy Burnaby shopping mall.
At approximately 3:40 p.m. on May 18, officers of the Metro Vancouver Transit Police Crime Suppression Team stopped suspected gang member Luis Manuel Baez, 25, of Surrey in the parking lot of Metropolis at Metrotown in Burnaby for openly smoking marijuana in a location contrary to the Cannabis Control and Licensing Act (CCLA).
While speaking with officers, Baez, who is well known to police, suddenly took off and was able to get in the driver’s seat of a car parked nearby. There was a brief struggle with officers as he attempted to start the car. Officers were eventually able to remove him from the vehicle, but the struggle continued.
While trying to gain control of Baez, officers saw him remove a handgun from his waistband and discard it under a parked car. The firearm was a loaded, semi-automatic .45 calibre handgun, according to police.
Baez was arrested and charged with one count of obstruction and multiple firearms offences. He has been remanded in custody. His next court appearance has yet to be determined.
“Bringing an end to gang violence is an ongoing concerted effort by all Lower Mainland municipal and RCMP police agencies. We are happy to have taken another firearm off the streets and out of the hands of an alleged gang member,” said Sgt. Clint Hampton.
You can text Transit Police directly and discreetly at 87.77.77 or call them at 604.515.8300.