Big manhunt nabs suspect in robbery

It only took RCMP an hour to track down and arrest a suspect after an armed robbery at a Ladysmith flower shop on Tuesday, March 4. Shortly before noon, a floral shop on 1st Avenue reported that a man had entered the business and brandished a knife, demanding cash from the woman working there.

The man fled the store with an undisclosed amount of money.

Unfortunately for him, there were multiple RCMP units working in the area that day, including South Island Traffic Services, Nanaimo Police Dog Service, Nanaimo Forensic Identification Section and the Island District General Investigation Section.

The Ladysmith detachment, with support from the RCMP Operational Communication Centre called in the troops and a search was conducted.

"As is often the case, there were additional RCMP resources working in and around Ladysmith which we called upon to bolster our response to this armed robbery," said Staff Sergeant Dave Herman, detachment commander of the Ladysmith RCMP Wednesday, March 5. "Regardless of the type of police work different officers are engaged in, a fleeing armed robbery suspect becomes their top priority, as it did yesterday."

Shortly before 1 p.m., barely an hour after the robbery, an officer with the South Island Traffic Services spotted a man matching the suspect description in the rural Diamond area of Ladysmith. Officers flooded the area, establishing a secure perimeter.

RCMP Police Dog Services tracked the suspect to where he was hiding under a sundeck of a residence on Grouhel Road.

The 28-year-old Ladysmith resident was taken into custody. He appeared in Duncan court last week.