A man accused of thefts and break-ins in Nanaimo, Duncan, Sooke and Port Renfrew was arrested at his home in the south Nanaimo area this week. (Black Press file photo)

Nanaimo RCMP seize firearms, ID, portable debit machine as ‘prolific offender’ arrested

Austin Carlson-McPherson, 24, accused of crimes in Nanaimo, Duncan, Port Renfrew and Sooke

Police in Nanaimo have arrested a suspect they describe as an “Island-wide prolific property offender.”

Austin Carlson-McPherson, 24, was arrested at his home on Cranberry Avenue, located in south Nanaimo, following execution of a search warrant by officers with the Nanaimo RCMP Street Crimes Unit, just after 9 a.m. Tuesday.

According to an RCMP press release, the search resulted in police seizing two firearms, stolen mail, personal identification, passports and a portable debit machine believed to have been stolen from Port Renfrew earlier in the year. Police also found bump keys, used by car dealerships to lock and unlock vehicle fleets, and keys belonging to Canada Post.

The firearms were allegedly stolen during a break-and-enter in Nanaimo in 2019.

Carlson-McPherson is the subject of upwards of 20 criminal investigations in Sooke, Port Renfrew and Duncan. He is facing numerous charges that include possession of stolen property, breaking-and-entering, eight counts of driving while prohibited to do so, flight from police and numerous thefts.

“It brings immense satisfaction to our officers to have this individual off the streets and to interrupt his pattern of criminality throughout Vancouver Island,” said Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman. “Additionally, investigators have been able to identify the owners of the property seized and are currently in the process of returning it.”

Carlson-McPherson will be held in custody until he he appears in court Friday, Sept. 25.

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