Okanagan ‘Batman’ offers helping hand, but RCMP call his presence a distraction
It’s not a scene you see every day: Batman offering assistance to local police.
Last Saturday in Kelowna, a man dressed in a Batman suit approached a residential area where police had their guns drawn.
“Is Batman here to save the day?” asked West Kelowna resident Melissa Parent as she filmed the man on her cellphone.
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Parent then panned to her right, showing Batman’s Batmobile — a black Dodge Ram, complete with a yellow-and-black Batman sticker on the tailgate.
“Like, what is even going on right now?” the woman asked.
Batman’s request to assist police must have been turned down because he was only at the scene for 45 seconds before returning to his vehicle.
On his Facebook page, Okanagan Batman said: “Stopped by to help but the RCMP had it under control.”
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Kelowna RCMP say the incident was a disturbance inside a residence along Pandosy Street. Paul MacDougall, acting officer in charge of the Kelowna detachment, said members initially gathered evidence that a firearm may have been involved in the disturbance.
“When they arrived at the scene, they took the necessary steps to contain the scene and keep the public away,” said MacDougall. “The occupants in the house were asked to exit, which they did.
“Ultimately, there was no firearm involved, and no charges are pending from the investigation. It was simply a disturbance in the residence and not criminal in nature.”
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However, MacDougall added that members took the complaint very seriously, stating: “We do every time there’s a firearm-involved complaint.”
“They had their weapons drawn because the threat at that time was unknown,” said MacDougall. “And then this individual, who was dressed as Batman, took it upon himself to come into the area.”
MacDougall said that although “in this particular instance, it turned out that it was a non-event, these types of situations are pretty dynamic and fluid. The situation can change very quickly and there is a risk to public safety.”
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He added: “The members were there, concentrating on the scene of the occurrence and the occupants that were involved. The presence of the individual on scene was an unnecessary distraction, especially given the fact he was dressed in full costume as Batman.
“The presence of the public is always something that we have to be aware of and people encroaching upon our scenes. But for their own safety, that’s why we try to keep them away,” MacDougall continued.
“But when somebody arrives dressed in costume, it’s just another distraction our members don’t need. Ultimately, their attention can be diverted for a second, which could have tragic results.”
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