The Nanaimo man who was wanted for allegedly assaulting two Port Alberni RCMP officers with bear spray was arrested in Coombs Wednesday.
On Jan. 15 at 7:15 a.m., two Port Alberni RCMP officers were bear sprayed while responding to a collision. Police said a truck and trailer went off the road on Redford and King streets.
The truck had been reported as stolen out of Nanaimo. Police said when an officer attempted to arrest one of the occupants of the truck, 28-year-old Christopher Michael Yaskow, he sprayed one of the officers in the face with bear spray before running away. A second officer was also affected by the spray. Both officers were decontaminated and returned to their shift later.
Yaskow then allegedly tried to steal another vehicle near Steede Avenue and Parkinson Place but police said he was deterred by the vehicle’s alarm.
Then on Wednesday at around 3:30 p.m., Port Alberni RCMP received a report that a vehicle was stolen from a residence on Bruce Street. Officers searched for the vehicle and set up a roadblock on the Hump of Highway 4 but the vehicle was not found at that time.
At around 4:30 p.m. the same day, the stolen vehicle was found in Coombs by Oceanside RCMP. Yaskow was arrested, with the assistance of the Nanaimo Police Dog Service, and taken into custody without incident. He is facing two counts of assaulting a peace officer with a weapon. He is also facing 14 other charges, including carrying a concealed weapon, escaping lawful custody, possession of stolen property and breach of numerous probation officers. He is remanded in custody until a court appearance on Jan. 23.
“This was a well-coordinated team effort between the members of Port Alberni, Nanaimo and Oceanside RCMP that has lead to locating and the arrest of Mr. Yaskow without any further injury to anyone,” Cpl. Amelia Hayden of the Port Alberni RCMP said in a statement.
The other occupant in the truck, a woman, walked away from the scene and is still at large.