At 1:30 a.m. on Tuesday (February 3), Transit Police received a report of a man with a gun at the bus loop by the Braid Street SkyTrain Station. Officers arriving on scene could see the butt of a handgun sticking out of the man’s pocket. The suspect was arrested as he tried to walk past the officers.
A loaded, replica style, .177 calibre, Elite II air pistol was recovered. The gun closely resembles a Beretta handgun.
The teenage suspect was accompanied by his 15-year-old girlfriend who advised that the youth had bought the gun earlier in the day and that they had been walking and were taking the bus from Coquitlam to New Westminster. As they walked, the two took turns shooting at bottles, cans and street signs, while consuming alcohol.
A check of the suspect determined that he had been reported as a missing person by his foster parents. Both teenagers were released to their foster parents after questioning. The incident is still under investigation.
Witnesses on the bus indicated that they had been frightened and extremely uncomfortable at the sight of the gun. The display of replica guns not only creates the same level of anxiety for those in the area but also requires a level of police response that can endanger the public, police and the suspect. Transit Police said the witnesses were to be commended for their quick reporting of this incident.