Construction of a new lodge near the 27 kilometre mark on the Morice West Forest Service Road. Wet’suwet’en supporters are currently gathered there anticipating enforcement of a B.C. Supreme Court injunction granting Coastal GasLink access to the company’s nearby pipeline worksite. (Trevor Hewitt photo)

Construction of a new lodge near the 27 kilometre mark on the Morice West Forest Service Road. Wet’suwet’en supporters are currently gathered there anticipating enforcement of a B.C. Supreme Court injunction granting Coastal GasLink access to the company’s nearby pipeline worksite. (Trevor Hewitt photo)

VIDEO: RCMP outline plan for ‘peaceful’ arrests as they deploy to northern B.C. pipeline site

Top cop says Mounties will use minimum reasonable force for safe arrests in enforcing court order

The RCMP are encouraging pipeline protesters to leave the area of the Morice West Forest Service Road to avoid being arrested, as police prepare to enforce a court order granting Coastal GasLink access to their worksite near Houston.

At a news conference in Surrey Wednesday afternoon, Assistant Commissioner Eric Stubbs, Criminal Operations Officer in charge of Core Policing for the BC RCMP, outlined three levels of arrests to be used if necessary – the first being voluntary, peaceful arrest with no handcuffs. For those who refuse to move, he said they would be carried off with minimal force.

“If the above scenarios do not occur, our members will respond to the behaviours that are presented before them,” Stubbs said. “They are instructed to use at least the least amount of force that is reasonable to safely arrest a protester.”

He also addressed last year’s enforcement of a temporary injunction in which 14 people were arrested at the pipeline site, saying the RCMP learned much from the event and a subsequent review.

He said all of the members deployed to the area this time received cultural awareness training last weekend, and will record the event with body cameras, handheld cameras and aerial cameras.

He noted the review indicated members did not punch or kick any protesters nor use weapons of any kind.

READ MORE: RCMP pipeline checkpoint ‘arbitrary and discriminatory,’ say B.C. complainants

ALSO READ: Pro-Wet’suwet’en youth group stages sit-in at Manitoba Liberal MP’s office

Finally, he commended all parties for attempting to work out a solution, but that orders from the B.C. Supreme Court are not optional.

He did not say when the enforcement action would begin.

“Again, I want to encourage continued dialogue with the RCMP, so all the people who are breaching the injuncti0n can be arrested safely with no use of force necessary.”

READ MORE: Gidimt’en clan condemning RCMP action after elder arrested at checkpoint

The Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs who oppose the Coastal GasLink natural gas pipeline had not commented immediately after the news conference.

editor tag

Coastal GasLink

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cowichan Tribes members line up at a drive-up clinic on Wednesday, Jan. 13 to receive the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in the region. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
BCAFN condems racism against Cowichan Tribes after COVID-19 outbreak

“Any one of us could do everything right and still catch the virus”: Regional Chief Terry Teegee.

Dr. Shannon Waters, the medical health officer for the Cowichan Valley Region, is reminding people to stay the course with COVID-19 measures. (File photo)
‘Stay the course’ with COVID measures, Island Health reminds

Limit social activity, wash hands, wear a mask, and isolate if you feel sick

Cowichan Bay tennis player Grace Haugen takes part in an exhibition at the South Cowichan Lawn Tennis Club in 2019, which also included Canadian legends Frank Dancevic and Daniel Nestor. Haugen has committed to further her career at the University of Montana starting next fall. (Citizen file)
Cowichan Bay tennis player prepares for next step in her journey

Grace Haugen commits to University of Montana

Police and fire crews at work at a fire scene at Mount Prevost School (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Classes cancelled for Mount Prevost students today

Second school fire in five days for North Cowichan schools

Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry head for the press theatre at the B.C. legislature for an update on COVID-19, Jan. 7, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 spread steady with 509 new cases Friday

Hospitalized and critical care cases decline, nine deaths

A still from surveillance footage showing a confrontation in the entranceway at Dolly’s Gym on Nicol Street on Friday morning. (Image submitted)
Troublemaker in Nanaimo fails at fraud attempt, slams door on business owner’s foot

VIDEO: Suspect causes pain and damage in incident downtown Friday morning

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Seasonal influenza vaccine is administered starting each fall in B.C. and around the world. (Langley Advance Times)
After 30,000 tests, influenza virually nowhere to be found in B.C.

COVID-19 precautions have eliminated seasonal infection

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau listens to a question during a news conference outside Rideau cottage in Ottawa, Friday, January 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau says Canada’s COVID vaccine plan on track despite Pfizer cutting back deliveries

Canadian officials say country will still likely receive four million doses by the end of March

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon shared a handwritten note his son received on Jan. 13, 2021. (Ravi Kahlon/Twitter)
Proud dad moment: B.C. minister’s son, 10, receives handwritten note for act of kindness

North Delta MLA took to Twitter to share a letter his son received from a new kid at school

Lilly and Poppy, two cats owned by Kalmar Cat Hotel ownder Donna Goodenough, both have cerebellAr hypoplasia, a genetic neurological condition that affects their ability to control their muscles and bones. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell River Mirror
VIDEO: Wobbly Cats a riot of flailing legs and paws but bundles of love and joy to their owner

Woman urges others to not fear adopting cats with disabilities

Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa on Friday, Jan. 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada’s top doctor says to avoid non-essential travel as B.C. explores legal options

Premier John Horgan says he is seeking legal advice on whether it can limit interprovincial travel

Nursing staff at West Coast General Hospital celebrate the announcement of a $6.25-million expansion of the emergency department that will start in March 2021. (File photo)
B.C. health ministry commits $6.25M to hospital expansion in Port Alberni

Plans for larger emergency department have been on hold since 2015

Most Read