Ongoing feud with neighbour led to nine-hour standoff with Kamloops RCMP - InfoNews

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Ongoing feud with neighbour led to nine-hour standoff with Kamloops RCMP

August 16, 2019 - 6:00 PM

KAMLOOPS — A police standoff earlier this year at a Kamloops townhouse was the result of an ongoing dispute between two neighbours, a Kamloops provincial judge was told.

Gary Wayne Kimberley, 58, was charged with one count of possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose and one count of willfully resisting or obstructing a peace officer after a nine-hour standoff with Mounties outside of his Sahali condo in February.

Kimberley pleaded guilty to both charges.

Crown prosecutor Leah Winters says it all started on Feb. 16 when Kamloops RCMP received a call from a neighbour of Kimberley’s stating she heard loud banging coming from his unit.

The first two officers who responded were updated on route by dispatch about guns potentially being inside the house. When officers arrived, one member drew his pistol and used a nearby vehicle as cover as another officer approached the front door.

The door was opened by Kimberley who appeared intoxicated and began to throw items onto the driveway. Officers identified themselves as police and verbally arrested Kimberley.

Winters says Kimberley was given loud, clear instructions to come out with his hands up and get on the ground.

Kimberley ignored the directions and went back inside his house. The officers observed Kimberley open the door again and saw that he was holding a black handgun and pointed it toward the sky.

“At that point, RCMP members yelled ‘gun, gun, gun’ in order to alert the officer’s partner,” Winters said. “The member pointed his pistol at Gary Kimberley and gave clear verbal commands again to drop the gun.”

Kimberley turned around and re-entered his house again and shut the door. The officers on scene alerted more members of the situation and police established an area of containment. RCMP contacted Kimberley’s wife and daughter who were not inside the house with him at the time. Kimberly's daughter told police she had spoken to her dad earlier in the day and said he seemed fine but was intoxicated.

RCMP activated the Emergency Response Team and were given Kimberley’s landline number so they could make contact with him by phone.

Kimberley told the police his neighbours were at fault and that he didn’t have a gun and there was nobody else inside the house with him. Police were able contact his wife who was out of town and told police Kimberly had three BB gun pistols in the past that but they were taken away from him six months ago because he had been suicidal.

Ongoing conversations with Kimberley and RCMP indicated he was getting more intoxicated. He told police he was scared of coming out of the house and getting shot. Police reiterated to Kimberley he would not be hurt.

At one point, he told police he was going to bed and told police to leave him alone.

Neighbours were eventually evacuated for safety and at around midnight the Emergency Response Team deployed gas into his unit.

Kimberley then presented himself at the door and was arrested without incident after midnight. When police arrested him, they noticed he was highly intoxicated and located three BB gun pistols inside his house.

His lawyer, Brad Smith, says the night’s events were triggered by an ongoing dispute with a new neighbour who had moved in and had been creating a lot of noise by slamming doors over a period of time.

Instead of taking appropriate steps, Kimberley decided to make more noise which caused another neighbour to call the police that night.

Smith says his client has no criminal record and fully understands the severity of his actions including the potential tragic consequences it could have had.

The neighbour that was making the noise has since moved out, but Kimberley has written a letter of an apology to both the former neighbour and to the police.

“He recognizes he could have been shot, and he recognizes the member that would have shot him would have been traumatized as a result of that,” Smith said.

Since the offence date, Smith said his client has stayed away from alcohol and has been addressing the underlying issues including seeking mental health counselling.

“Certainly this is erratic behaviour, you put a lot of people in danger,” Judge Raymond Phillips said. “Although this is just a BB gun nobody knows that except for you.”

Phillips also said he appreciated Kimberley's early guilty plea and pointed out the incident appears to be out of his character.

“But this is still a very serious incident,” he says. “Things could have gone considerably worse.”

Kimberley was sentenced to six months of a conditional sentence order and will be on a curfew from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. He will also be on a one year probation following his jail sentence and was given a discretionary firearm prohibition for five years.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Karen Edwards or call (250) 819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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