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Border shooting suspect arrested in local residence
A man who launched a day-long cross-border manhunt was arrested early Wednesday morning at a home in Abbotsford.
But the Abbotsford Police Department (APD) is not yet releasing the man's name or age, or specific details about what led police to the residence.
Const. Ian MacDonald (photo below), speaking at a press conference Wednesday afternoon, said the suspect was arrested at about 4 a.m. without incident by APD patrol officers and members of the emergency response team.
He was found at a home "within the city of Abbotsford," although MacDonald would not say what area.
MacDonald said the man is Canadian and has recently resided in the Fraser Valley and Lower Mainland. It is not believed that he was a resident of the home where he was arrested.
The man is well known to police for crimes such as drugs and property offences, MacDonald said.
"We do believe there will be connections to organized crime and gangs," he added.
MacDonald said the man is currently in the custody of Abbotsford Police, and it is not yet clear whether he will be extradited to the United States.
He said police are continuing their investigation, including the gathering of evidence and details such as who might have aided the man in eluding authorities for almost 24 hours.
No formal charges have yet been laid.
The APD was contacted by U.S. authorities on Tuesday morning, asking for assistance in searching for a man who had fired gunshots at U.S. border agents in the Columbia Valley and then fled into a heavily forested area along the Canada-U.S. border.
It was believed the suspect would try to make his way south into Canada across Vedder Mountain in the Sumas Prairie area of Abbotsford.
The search continued throughout the night, with police using night-vision equipment and sending out tactical teams, MacDonald said.
The suspect had initially been spotted with another man, who was arrested by U.S. border agents. Both suspects had been carrying backpacks.
U.S. Border Patrol agent Jeffrey Jones confirmed Wednesday that the backpacks had been seized at the scene and contained 58.2 pounds of an "amphetamine-based product." He would not say what the product was.
The name of that suspect arrested in the U.S. also has not been released nor is it known whether he is a Canadian or American citizen.
MacDonald said the APD assists in the search for border jumpers "on a regular basis" and arrests such people "on a monthly basis."
He said this incident required a more intense police response because the suspect was carrying a gun and had fired at law enforcement officials.
"What amplified this was the public safety risk," he said.