RCMP dog Jager helped make an arrest after tracking assault suspect through snow and steep terrain in Nanaimo Lakes backcountry this past weekend.                                Photo Submitted

RCMP dog Jager helped make an arrest after tracking assault suspect through snow and steep terrain in Nanaimo Lakes backcountry this past weekend. Photo Submitted

Nanaimo RCMP and police dog track suspect through wintry backcountry

Assault suspect arrested after two-hour track by police dog Jager through snow and steep terrain

One man is in custody and facing weapons and property-related charges after a Nanaimo RCMP police dog handler and other officers tracked him for hours through snow and rugged terrain following an alleged assault on the weekend.

According to police, the incident began at about 5:30 p.m. Saturday when the suspect, David Banford, 39, and a woman, both from Nanaimo, were found inside a private cabin at Deadwood Creek Campsite, at Nanaimo Lakes, by two men who are the cabin’s owners. They called the RCMP and then decided to walk the suspects to the main gate at Nanaimo Lakes Road to wait for police to arrive.

As they were being walked to the gate, Banford allegedly pulled out a can of pepper spray, sprayed both of their escorts and fled.

Banford’s female companion did not resist and was taken into custody when police arrived. Constables Tanner Fowler and Josh Grafton with police dog Jager then set out to track down Banford, which took them on a two-hour trek, following Jager’s lead, through 30-centimetre deep snow, brush and up and down steep mountainous terrain – a track Grafton described as one of his toughest to date – before they caught up with Banford, who received several bites during his arrest. He was taken to Nanaimo Regional General Hospital to be treated and was then held in custody overnight at Nanaimo RCMP detachment.

Given the remoteness of the search area and limited cell phone and radio coverage, additional officers and Nanaimo Search and Rescue were called in to help bring Banford to waiting police vehicles.

Banford appeared in provincial court in Nanaimo on Tuesday where he was charged with two counts of assault with a weapon and break-and-enter. He has been released from custody pending his next court appearance March 5.

The 29-year-old woman who was with him has also been released on a promise to appear in provincial court in Nanaimo May 7 to face a charge of one count of break-and-enter.



photos@nanaimobulletin.com
Like us on
Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cyclists pick up swag and cycling trail maps at city Bike to Work Week ‘celebration station’ a few years ago. (News Bulletin file photo)
City of Nanaimo’s active transportation plan will be about more than infrastructure

City working on goals to double walking trips and quintuple cycling and busing trips

Kinsmen Participark in Beban Park will be closed next week so city workers can remove dangerous trees and invasive plant species. The work is the start of an improvement project that includes replacing signs and fitness stations in the spring. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Nanaimo fitness park to close for removal of hazard trees and invasive plants

Tree cutting to start in Beban Park’s Kinsmen Participark as part of improvement project

Nanaimo RCMP seek public assistance after numerous tire slashings between Jan. 12-14. (News Bulletin file)
Police seek public’s help after ‘tire slashing spree’ in central Nanaimo

Ten reports of slashed tires in the last three days, say Nanaimo RCMP

Police hope to find the owners of two canoes found at Descanso Bay on Gabriola Island. (Photo submitted)
RCMP seek owners of canoes found on Gabriola Island that possibly came from Nanaimo

Two older canoes, found by police at Descanso Bay, could have washed ashore with recent storms

A woman wears a face mask and shield to curb the spread of COVID-19 while walking in North Vancouver, B.C., on Wednesday, January 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
536 COVID cases, 7 deaths reported as B.C. find its first case of South African variant

Henry said 69,746 people have received their first dose of the COVID vaccine.

Beef to my neighbour who likes to decorate his yard with garbage. In his front yard he has a toilet bowl.
Beefs & Bouquets, Jan. 13

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Seiners fill the waters between Comox and Nanoose Bay during roe herring fishery. file photo, Pacific Wild
Quota debate heats up on the eve of Vancouver Island herring fishery

Industry and conservationists weigh in how much catch should be allowed as DFO decision coming soon

Alan Davidson was sentenced to almost six years for abusing seven boys in the late 1970s and early 1990s. (Canadian Press file)
Full parole granted to former Mountie, sports coach convicted of sex abuse of boys

Alan Davidson convicted of abusing boys in B.C. and Saskatchewan in late ’70s, early ’90s

The first COVID-19 vaccine arrives in B.C. in temperature-controlled containers, Dec. 13, 2020. (B.C. government)
More vaccine arrives as B.C. struggles with remote COVID-19 cases

Long-term care homes remain focus for public health

North Cowichan Mayor Al Siebring has expressed his frustration with harassment of people who have made racist comments online about Cowichan Tribes in the wake of a COVID-19 outbreak in the First Nation. (Citizen file)
Island mayor calls for de-escalation as social media gets uglier in racism fight

“Racism is wrong. But so is this kind of reaction”:

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada said a lack of experienced crew members and the inability to detect navigational errors is what led to a Sooke search and rescue boat running aground in February 2019. (Twitter / @VicJRCC_CCCOS)
TSB: Sooke search and rescue boat crash caused by ‘misinterpretation of navigational information’

Crew members were lacking experience and unable to detect navigational errors

The first Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine dose in Canada is prepared at The Michener Institute in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Doses of COVID-19 vaccine expected in 60 B.C. First Nations by next week

B.C. has allocated 25,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to First Nations for distribution by the end of February

Most Read