An alleged abduction at an elementary school led to a lockdown, police pursuit, and the arrest of a North Saanich woman on Friday morning, according to police.
Shortly before 11 a.m., Sidney North Saanich RCMP received a 911 call from Deep Cove Elementary School. Police said a woman who was prohibited from being on the property assaulted a staff member – who attempted to stop her – and allegedly abducted her nine-year-old son.
The school was placed into lockdown to ensure the safety of children and staff.
Sidney North Saanich RCMP said officers responded immediately and located a vehicle travelling southbound on the Pat Bay Highway. When officers activated their lights and sirens, the driver of the vehicle accelerated and didn’t stop.
“After a brief pursuit in which she struck a police vehicle, she was stopped prior to reaching Mt. Newton Cross Road,” a police statement said.
A 42-year-old woman was arrested and the two other occupants of the vehicle – her son and an adult female family member – were determined to be unharmed by BC Ambulance Service personnel.
Police said the woman is in RCMP custody after violating an undertaking to a police officer. Sidney North Saanich RCMP are also recommending new charges from the incident including abduction, assault, fail to stop for police and dangerous driving.
“Thanks to the actions of our front line officers this incident was resolved swiftly and the young child was quickly retrieved and physically unharmed,” said Sgt. Colin Cook with Sidney North Saanich RCMP. “Family disputes are emotional and have the unfortunate potential to end tragically. We are thankful that, with the assistance of the staff at Deep Cove Elementary and our partners at the Central Saanich police, this was not the case today.”
Two Sidney North Saanich RCMP officers were injured in the incident – one while responding to the initial 911 call and the second when his vehicle was struck by the woman fleeing. Both officers were assessed on scene by BC Ambulance Service personnel and are recovering at home.
Police said the woman will remain in custody while the investigation continues.