A 46-year-old Surrey man with an “extensive criminal history” is in custody after sucker punching a cop and later swinging a five-foot metal rod at other officers.
An Abbotsford Police Department (APD) member first responded to calls of a suspicious man around 4:45 p.m. near the 4600-block of Interprovincial Highway, Const. Ian MacDonald said.
The suspect was located by an officer near a farm outbuilding in the area, MacDonald said.
The man gave the officer what turned out to be a false name and appeared to be calm and cooperating, he said.
MacDonald said the suspect waited for the officer to let his guard down before sucker punching him and running away.
The area was then cordoned off and a dog unit, along with several more police vehicles, responded to the scene, MacDonald said.
“As you can imagine, in an officer-needs-assistance type of situation, the troops arrive,” he said.
The officers mounted a man-hunt, searching fields and outbuildings in the rural area, MacDonald said.
When officers located the man a second time, MacDonald said the suspect swung a long metal rod at the officers who tried to calm him down but ultimately had to use pepper spray to subdue him.
The man continued to struggle with officers after being sprayed, according to MacDonald.
“He was fighting through the whole thing,” he said.
“It had the potential to have gone bad on both sides. You have a person brandishing a weapon that could cause injury to police officers and we obviously have gear that could have caused injury to him,” MacDonald said. “So really, when you think about it from that standpoint the fact that people end up walking away with just minor injuries is a small miracle.”
MacDonald said police will be recommending charges: two counts of assaulting a police officer, and one count each break and enter and possession of stolen property, MacDonald said.
The suspect was taken to hospital to be treated for the effects of the pepper spray and is in custody, he said.
Top photo: Sunglasses and a baseball hat, belonging to an APD officer, sit next to a toque and headlamp belonging to the suspect. The headlamp had a green bulb in it, possibly used by the suspect to evade detection.
Bottom photo: The alleged assault weapon.