84-year-old Vernon woman whacks intruder with cane to stop break-in

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VERNON - It was a frightening morning for an 84-year-old Vernon resident.

Police say shortly before 5 a.m. on July 4, they received a 911 call about a break-and-enter in progress in the 1000 block of 30 Avenue in Vernon, RCMP spokesperson Const. Kelly Brett says in a release.

“The resident stated someone had just broken the window of their front door and was attempting to gain access by reaching through the broken window to unlock the door from the inside,” Brett says.

The home owner, an 84-year-old Vernon woman, managed to prevent the suspect from gaining entry to her home by hitting the man on his hands with her cane. He was, however, able to grab keys and gained entry to the attached garage, Brett says.

Police arrived and found the suspect still in the garage, reportedly armed with an axe and a hammer, where he became combative towards the officers, Brett says.

“The officers attempted to negotiate with the male to drop the weapons, however he allegedly made it clear that he wasn’t going to jail and would do anything to prevent that,” Brett says. “The officers used a Conducted Electrical Weapon in an effort to subdue the male, however had to deploy the device twice as the male continued to fight with police.’”

A 34-year-old Vernon man, Justin Inverarity, was taken into custody and charged with break and enter, attempted theft of a motor vehicle, mischief, assault and breach of probation. He was held in custody until his next court appearance of July 12, when he is scheduled to have a bail hearing, according to court records. 

“The actions of the man clearly could have resulted in serious injuries to himself, the victim, or our officers," acting operations officer Sgt. Tory Romailler says in the release. “We commend our officers for their quick response and ability to resolve a violent situation safely.”

Approximate location

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