Police dog evicts Nanaimo squatter who moved in while residents vacationed

40-year-old arrested Monday night while home’s usual residents holidayed in the Yukon

A man who allegedly squatted in a Nanaimo home while residents were away on holiday was arrested last night after he refused to leave, say police.

The 40-year-old, who was known to police, did not come out of the house when asked and so a police dog was sent in, said Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman.

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O’Brien said a family that lives in the 300 block of Nicol Street went to the Yukon for three weeks and “it appears that either a squatter or squatters basically took over their house and did a lot of damage … We were advised the house was empty at the time and nobody should be in the house.”

He said RCMP received a number of calls before finding the home occupied Monday at about 8 p.m. after a report of a break-and-enter in progress.

“It was known [the suspect] has a propensity for violence and is sometimes carrying weapons…” O’Brien said. “The male was taken out [of the home], taken to hospital for a few stitches and he’s in cells as we speak.”

The suspect was expected to appear in court in Nanaimo today, Sept. 8, to face a charge of break-and-enter.

O’Brien said these sort of incidents aren’t common because he said a lot of citizens in Nanaimo are “switched on” to crime prevention.

“Key is communication between neighbours to say, ‘hey, I’m going to be out of town for a while, can you keep an eye on things?’ Not saying this did not happen, but obviously there was a breakdown somewhere,” O’Brien said.

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