RCMP warn of drink tampering after 2 reported incidents in Nanaimo – CBC.ca

RCMP warn of drink tampering after 2 reported incidents in Nanaimo - CBC.ca
Womens drinks spiked – BC News
Nanaimo RCMP are warning women about drink tampering after two reported incidents at an undisclosed area nightclub.

Const. Gary O'Brien with Nanaimo RCMP said police are speaking out now because people need to be aware drink tampering can occur anywhere.

“Drink tampering can occur in a number of different settings and is not restricted to just night clubs,” Nanaimo RCMP Cst. Gary O’Brien said in a statement.

"It's not just nightclubs. It could be bush parties, dormitories or house parties," said O'Brien.

Police warning of spiked drinks at Nanaimo nightclubs

Drink tampering involves drugs such as Rohypnol, GHB or Ketamine being discreetly added to a beverage.

RCMP ask anyone who knows of someone involved with drink tampering to call police in Nanaimo at 250-754-2345 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

O'Brien said the two women reported feeling nauseous and lightheaded within five minutes of having a drink.

"They were losing their balance. They were having a hard time breathing … classic symptoms of having your drink spiked," he said.

Authorities say effects may vary from person-to-person depending on their weight, amount of alcohol consumed and how alert they are.

If you think your drink has been spiked, Nanaimo RCMP ask that you stay with friends and get immediate medical attention. And to prevent drink tampering:

Nanaimo RCMP says a drug called Rohypnol, GHB or Ketamine is discreetly added to a beverage when drink spiking or tampering occurs.

"Its a bigger problem than we know," said O'Brien. "It absolutely goes unreported. The memory is often cloudy or intermittent, and the women are embarrassed."

Nanaimo RCMP say if you know of anyone who is involved in drink tampering to call them at 250-754-2345. If you wish to remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at www.nanaimocrimestoppers.com or call 1-800-222-8477.

Nanaimo RCMP is warning nightclub patrons to not accept a drink from a stranger, and if you do, watch it being poured.

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

You are advised to stop drinking what’s in your glass immediately if the taste or colour has changed.

It's not cool to show off your guns and drink before dry grad. Especially if you're a teacher.

Edward Robert Lefurgy, a high school teacher in Surrey, has been reprimanded for actions at his school's dry grad two years ago.

Victims often feel light-headed, and have slurred speech, memory loss, nausea and loss of consciousness, said Nanaimo RCMP spokesman Const. Gary OBrien. Effects may vary from person to person, depending on their weight, amount of alcohol consumed and state of alertness, and are often felt within 10 to 20 minutes.

Information posted in a decision by the BC Commissioner for Teacher Regulations, states Lefurgy began the night with a couple of drinks with one of the parents at a bar in a Vancouver hotel where the event was taking place.

Inside the event, he asked another parent if her son was even graduating. He then provided a false name when asked for it by the parent.

Drink tampering can occur anywhere, not just nightclubs, OBrien said. If you believe your drink has been spiked, stay with friends and immediately seek medical attention.

At the dry grad, where Lefurgy dealt blackjack, he made numerous inappropriate remarks to students, telling one girl, “Your boyfriend’s alright looking, but you could do better.”

Police are not naming the nightclub and did not release any details on what happened to the women after their drinks were spiked.

Lefurgy was suspended two days without pay for his actions. He was also required to complete a “Reinforcing Respectful Professional Boundaries” course from the Justice Institute of British Columbia.

A family member has identified the deceased in an online memorial as 63-year-old Joseph William Cousineau, CTV News reports. 

Drink spiking occurs when a drug — often Rohypnol, GHB or ketamine — is surreptitiously added to someones beverage.

"My dad was one of a kind, a modern day pirate, a West Coast legend," wrote daughter Anamarija Cousineau. "It's no secret he was haunted by voices only he could hear. Yet, despite his schizophrenia, Dad always tried to live life with the wind at his back and the throttle wide open."

RCMP say they have completed an investigation into alleged voter fraud ahead of the civic election in Surrey, and Crown prosecutors are reviewing their report for charge assessment.

• If you do accept a drink from someone you dont know, go to the bar and watch the drink being poured.

Surrey was one of several municipalities in Metro Vancouver where voter fraud allegations were reported during local election campaigns last fall.

The Mounties say in a news release they launched the investigation in September after Surrey's chief elections officers noted irregularities in the mail ballot registration process.

They found 67 applications to be fraudulent because they were not completed or signed by the voter listed on the application, but no ballots were sent out based on those applications and the process to apply for a mail ballot was amended on Oct. 1 to preserve the integrity of the election.

The Mounties received one more complaint that an election employee at a polling station tried to influence a voter but they say the employee was quickly removed by officials overseeing the election.

The results of the RCMP probe were shared with the chief electoral officer and Crown counsel, who has forwarded them to the B.C. prosecution service to consider charges.

“Allegations such as these are rare, but important to investigate to ensure the integrity of our democratic process,” Asst. Commissioner Dwayne McDonald said in the release.

In October, the City of Vancouver also said it was aware of messages circulating on social media site WeChat that appeared to offer money in exchange for voting in Richmond, Burnaby and Vancouver.

It said the allegations were forwarded to both Vancouver police and the RCMP in Richmond and Burnaby.

RCMP in Surrey have previously said the fraudulent applications have not been linked to any civic election candidate or party.

RCMP are warning the public after the alleged tampering on April 5, CTV News reports. The club was not named by police.

So-called date rape drugs like Rohypnol, GHB or ketamine can be discreetly added to drinks, police warn.

"Within 10 to 20 minutes of the drug being added to the drink, the unsuspecting target may begin to experience a number of physical symptoms: light headedness, slurred speech, sleepy, memory loss, nausea and loss of consciousness," says Const. Gary O'Brien said Friday.

Police advise women to stay close to friends, not accept drinks from a strangers, and never leave their drink unattended.

A serious crash in Surrey has left a driver with "serious, potentially life-altering injuries," according to police.

The collision between a Ford F-250 pickup and a Toyota Corolla left the smaller car demolished, its front end smashed and the roof ripped completely off.

The crash happened in the Guildford area, at the intersection of 144th Street and 104th Avenue, about 6 a.m.

Surrey RCMP’s Criminal Collision Investigation Team is investigating, and police are seeking witnesses and drivers with dash-cam video.

Contact Surrey RCMP at 604-599-0502, or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or www.solvecrime.ca. 

B.C.'s public safety minister says an enforcement team has begun investigating and closing unlicensed marijuana stores around the province.

At the time, Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth said the team was not expected to get rolling until more licensed pot stores opened.

He says the team is not yet at full strength, and Farnworth can't say how many investigators are on the job, but he believes there are enough to "have a visible profile."

He also says investigators won't immediately be shutting down unlicensed pot stores but will instead inform operators about new licensing regulations governing marijuana sales.

"I think, right now, what they have been doing is what you could call education, visiting illegal operations and letting them know (the team) is up and running," says Farnworth.

The cost of fuel around Metro Vancouver is rising again, break previous record-high prices that were set only a week ago.

Prices at some Vancouver-area stations were listed at $1.68.9 per litre early Friday, a jump of more than one cent overnight and an increase of about five cents since last Thursday.

Analysts blame the trend on issues ranging from gas shortages to reduced capacity at refineries in the western United States as those facilities do annual maintenance or switch to summer-blend fuels.

An increase to British Columbia's carbon tax on April 1 also added about one cent per litre to the cost of gasoline.

After prices reached $1.64 per litre on April 4, Premier John Horgan pledged his government would monitor the situation, but he also said carbon and other taxes were not the only reasons for expensive fuel.

Dan McTeague, petroleum analyst with Gasbuddy.com, says wholesale gas sells for $1.56 per litre, so he doubts retail prices will drop soon, and just two weeks ago predicted drivers should expect "$1.60 to $1.65 will be the new normal." 

The College of Dental Surgeons of British Columbia has 30 days to brush up on its accountability to the public following the release of a performance inquiry report.

Health Minister Adrian Dix said Thursday he accepted the inquiry's 21 recommendations to ensure the college, which registers, certifies and regulates B.C.'s dentists and dental assistants, acts in the public's best interests.

"We have almost two dozen recommendations which we expect the college to implement that will improve regulation of dentistry, of dental surgeons in B.C., and to put the public first," he said. "This is not just a message for dental surgeons but a message for all the professions and all the colleges."

The College of Dental Surgeons of B.C. could not be immediately reached for comment about the report.

Harry Cayton, a regulatory administrative expert, was appointed to conduct the inquiry and concluded the dental college was meeting 17 of 28 international standards for good governance.

"They only pass around 60 per cent of the standards of good regulation, and although that is not a disaster, it's a serious flaw," Cayton told a news conference. "They can rescue themselves from that, but they need to do work."

Cayton's inquiry recommended the college improve its internal data collection and performance management. He also recommended it improve its system of governance by ensuring any dentist currently facing a complaint investigation should step down from a college board or committee until the issue is resolved in their favour.

His report says the college board and its committees are more focused on protecting the interests of dentists instead of the public and the college has not been effective in ensuring the safety of patients.

"It is my conclusion that the board of the college has not always in the past put fully into effect its role in ensuring the safety of dental patients and in protecting the public," says the report. "Some dentists both on the board and on college committees continue to believe that the college should protect dentists."

Dix launched the review into the administrative and operational practices of the college in March 2018.

He said an all-party committee was also appointed to examine plans to modernize the regulatory framework for all of B.C.'s health professions.

The Central Okanagan Emergency Operations Centre is hosting a Facebook live emergency preparedness broadcast at 11:30 a.m. Tune in for an informative update and to learn more about what to include in an emergency kit.

Regardless of the emergency – flooding, land slippages or wildfires – the Central Okanagan Emergency Operation Centre is ready and prepared if needed to support field crews responding to any emergency that may occur in our region.

“We’re ready, our systems are in place and we ask that residents do their part, too,” said Emergency Program Coordinator Sandra Follack. “It’s much easier, and less stressful, to be prepared before there is a need – make sure you know the risks, make a plan and get a kit.”

A new report indicates those new so-called energy efficient high-end condos may actually be energy hogs.

BC Hydro has released suggesting many new, high-end condo buildings and the British Columbians living in them have a much larger energy footprint than those living in older condos and apartments – regardless of what they may think.   The report found that while condo living means smaller homes that use less power than detached single-family homes, this does not necessarily represent the total energy footprint of living in a high-rise condo building. New data released by BC Hydro shows that the amount of electricity used in condos has nearly doubled since the 1980s. In fact, the average newly built high-rise building’s electricity consumption has increased by 65 per cent. The report points the finger at the addition of more luxurious amenities like heated pools, hot tubs, saunas, fitness centres and movie theatres.   While apartment and condo dwellers have average electricity bills that are about 50 per cent lower than those in the average single-family home, those lower bills don't tell the whole story.

The mayor of Maple Ridge is on the hot seat over comments about addicts "raping and pillaging" his community.

Mike Morden made the comments in a controversial video posted to YouTube that received scorn from members of his own council.

"I don't feel his words represent the city," Duncan said. "He's not speaking as an individual, he's speaking as a mayor, and he needs to act that way … I don't feel his comments were appropriate at all."

Meanwhile, the BC Liberals say the NDP's homelessness strategy is a failure, pointing to RCMP stats that show a 250 per cent spike in crime around a supportive housing site in Nanaimo.

Maple Ridge council has opposed a provincial plan for modular housing, saying it lacks proper supports. But, the province is moving ahead regardless.

“In the case of Maple Ridge, there is the sense of make-believe that somehow there's a better solution on the horizon," Premier John Horgan said.

Despite the province being the largest producer of the fruit in Canada, the number of growers is shrinking, and last year saw a dip in prices as growers compete against cheaper imports from Mexico and China. Farmers are also facing crop damage in the wake of freezing temperatures in February.

Amanjot Singh Grewal told CTV News he hasn't been able to bring in enough income from his 75-acre operation to cover costs. 

The growers are pinning their hopes on federal government development of a new variety to set B.C. fruit apart from competitors.

“Our land costs are very high, our employment costs are high compared to other global competitors, and so it’s becoming hard to compete,” Alf Krause of Aldergrove said.