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Police officer in B.C.’s Interior allegedly pepper sprayed during traffic stop

According to police, the female driver from the Lower Mainland pepper-sprayed the officer shortly after the traffic stop was conducted. File / Global News

Police in B.C.’s Interior say an officer was pepper-sprayed during a traffic stop on the weekend in Revelstoke.

RCMP say the incident happened Sunday morning in Revelstoke, at approximately 9:30 a.m., and that it involved a small SUV towing a utility trailer along the Trans-Canada Highway.

According to police, the female driver from the Lower Mainland pepper-sprayed the officer shortly after the traffic stop was conducted, with the driver being arrested a short time later.

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“During the course of what started as a routine traffic stop, the driver deployed pepper spray at the police officer, while the officer interacted with the woman at her driver’s side window,” Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey said in a press release.

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“While our officer was dealing with the temporarily disabling effects of the pepper spray, a male passenger exited the vehicle and the suspect fled the area eastbound along the highway.”

The vehicle was described as a blue, early 1990s GMC Tracker, which was towing a white, enclosed utility trailer. Police say the incident happened around 20 kilometres east of Revelstoke.

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Police say the officer was treated at the scene by paramedics.

They also say the officer determined that the man who fled was a hitchhiker, and was not associated to the female driver.

Further, they say the suspect vehicle was located a few kilometres from the scene.

“The woman, who was found inside the utility trailer, was emotionally distraught, uncooperative and failed to comply with police commands,” police said in the release.

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“She was eventually physically taken into police custody. She was unharmed.”

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Revelstoke RCMP added that a loaded crossbow, pepper spray and a knife were found inside the Tracker.

Regarding the driver, police say the 26-year-old woman from Maple Ridge was in custody as of Monday and was facing a number of potential criminal charges.

Revelstoke RCMP say the woman was released on Tuesday, just after 1 p.m., with specific conditions.

“This shocking situation highlights the inherent dangers that frontline police officers face each and every day they go to work,” said Revelstoke RCMP detachment commander and Staff Sgt. Kurt Grabinsky.

“This officer remained focused on her duty to protect and serve the public by continuing her investigation and relaying important details to other officers in order to safely apprehend the woman who posed a potential risk to herself and others.”

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Revelstoke RCMP are asking that if you witnessed this incident or encountered this woman before, you are asked to call them at 250-837-5255.

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