Shambhala brings another laundry list of arrests and charges
The year’s Shambhala festival brought with it the usual dog’s breakfast of drugs, alcohol, mental health and nuisance calls, according to RCMP Cpl. Riordan Bellman.
“The Salmo Detachment responded to over 40 calls of service relating to the festival,” he said. “There were 14 prisoners, and one had to be taken to hospital as it appeared he was suffering some mental distress. The calls of service ranged from assaults, possession of substances for the purpose of trafficking, other drug possession files, trespassing, theft, mental health issues, causing a disturbance, liquor files and vandalism.
“Salmo RCMP were assisting with highway roadchecks,” he added. “During one roadcheck after Shambhala a travel trailer was removed from the road for noted safety deficiencies.’
Meanwhile the RCMP’s West Kootenay Traffic Services is reporting more than 200 drug seizures in connection with the event.
“Between Aug. 5and 13, the West Kootenay Traffic Service Unit and West Kootenay Integrated Road Safety Unit assisted Salmo Detachment with the large increase of vehicles travelling to and from the Shambhala Festival,” said RCMP Sgt. Derrick Donovan.
“The members worked long hours and there (were) extra resources brought in from Trail, Castlegar, Nelson IBET and Nelson Police Department to assist with road safety. Unfortunately there was one serious collision that occurred in the East Kootenay area involving a vehicle leaving the Festival on Aug. 13.
“Police made over 200 drug seizures consisting of cannabis (marihuana), hash, cocaine, MDMA (ecstasy), ketamine, methadone and other drugs.
“There are several drug charges being recommended for Possession For the Purpose of Trafficking. There were 18 drivers issued driving suspensions that were under the influence of drugs and 10 under the influence of alcohol where 24 hour, three-day or 90-day immediate driving suspensions were issued. The majority of the driving suspensions were issued to the drivers departing the festival.
“There were also nine liquor seizures from vehicles and several hundred traffic violations issued for Fail To Wear Seat Belt, Speed, Other Moving, Use Electronic Device While Driving, No Driver’s License, Drive Contrary to Conditions, No Insurance and Vehicle Safety Defects.
“Police would like to thank the local community for their patience at the extra road checks set up during the week of Shambhala to detect unsafe drivers and vehicles to help keep our communities safe.”