A video that has been shared widely on social media shows Vancouver police officers arresting a man at Trout Lake with his young son watching in distress, but police said Wednesday there are more details than what the video reveals.
In the video, the man can be heard saying he has not done anything wrong and that he has his son in the car.
At one point, the young boy can be seen coming out of the car and crying while the man is yelling to him that he is sorry.
“We don’t want to ever have a situation where we’re having to arrest a parent in front of their child,” Sgt. Steve Addison with the Vancouver Police Department told reporters Wednesday.
“It’s heartbreaking to see that child getting out of the car crying and upset.”
Vancouver police said the man was being arrested for criminal harassment after he allegedly breached numerous bail conditions and a protection order in place for his former partner.
Police said officers did not know a child was with him when they attempted to arrest him.
Addison said an officer asked the man to step out of the car and he did, but when they told him he was under arrest, the man resisted by getting back into the car.
“Had he complied by reasonable directions from the police as they were executing their lawful duties, this would not have happened,” Addison added.
He said once officers realized a child was in the car, they believed the man was either attempting to flee with the boy or was going to barricade himself.
“This man chose to attempt to get into the vehicle and we were not going to allow this man to get in the vehicle and create a potentially dangerous situation for this young child,” Addison added.
He said the man’s previous behaviour set off alarms — the last time he was arrested, in May, officers said he barricaded himself for several hours inside a home.
At that time, the emergency response and crisis negotiation teams had to get involved.
In this case, Addison said Vancouver police officers comforted the boy who is now back in the custody of his mother.
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