Media Releases

It’s not a new scam but it’s a good example of how convincing and brazen scammers can be. It started with a woman receiving a call from what appeared to be her husband’s cell phone number. When she answered it, the man on the phone said he was a police officer and that he had the woman’s husband under arrest. He told the woman that in order for her husband to be released, the police officer needed a copy of his driver’s license and passport, and that a $15,000 surety was to be wired through her bank.

As the woman was texting a picture of her husband’s documents to the alleged police officer, her husband walked into the house. Thankfully she had not sent any money and immediately contacted police (the real police), ICBC and Passport Canada.

If you find yourself faced with a similar call, remember to be cautious and curious. If the person says they are a police officer, ask for their full name and badge number. Then tell them that you will call them back at the police department so that you can confirm their identity, and then hang up. A real police officer won’t be offended by this. And remember, a government agency will never ask you to wire money to them, including the police.

For more information on scams, check out the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre’s website at: 

http://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/fraud-escroquerie/index-eng.htm

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The Saanich Police Street Crime Unit have arrested a 39 year old Saanich man for drug trafficking. The man, who is known to police for previous drug offences, was the subject of an investigation that started in late July when police observed him acting suspiciously. On July 31st, officers had gathered enough evidence to arrest him and did so during a traffic stop on Blenkinsop Road.

With the man in custody, officers then obtained a search warrant for his residence in the 1600 block of San Juan Avenue. During the search of his home, more than $170,000 in cash, half a kilogram of drugs, and two stun batons were located. The drugs, believed to be cocaine, heroin, fentanyl and methamphetamine, have a street value of approximately $81,000.

The man has since been released from custody and police will be recommended several charges including 3 counts of drug trafficking and 2 counts of possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose.

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Saanich Police are investigating a series of break and enters into homes in the area and are looking for the public’s help in both preventing them and identifying who is responsible.

Between March and July, we have received almost 20 reports of homeowners returning from a trip to find their house ransacked. In most of these cases, the home has been entered through a rear window or door, and jewelry, cash and liquor has been taken. And as noted above, in each case, the residents of the home have been away. We believe that the person or persons responsible are deliberately targeting these homes knowing that they have the luxury of time once inside.

Our investigations into these cases has involved extensive work from our Patrol, Street Crime and Intelligence units. Multiple avenues of investigation are being pursued but we are still in need of more information and are asking the community to help. If you have information on who is responsible, please call us at 250-475-4321 or to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Additionally, if you see someone behaving or looking suspicious in your neighbourhood, we want you to call us at the time you see them. Delaying your call could mean the person has moved on and we are then unable to locate them.

As with many crimes, there are things that we can do to help prevent them from happening. To protect your home from burglars while on a trip, here are some basic tips to follow:

     - Ensuring all your doors and windows are closed and locked, regardless of where they are on your house, high or low, big or small;

     - Stop paper and parcel deliveries;

     - Use motion lights and timers, and ensure your home security system is turned on;

     - Tell your trusted neighbours, family, friends and Block Watch Captain that you'll be away;

     - Have someone check on your house regularly; and

     - Don't post your trip on social media until you are home.

There are lots more home security tips on our website at:   https://www.saanichpolice.ca/index.php/crime-prevention/block-watch/home-security

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Saanich Police are looking for the public’s help in locating Jonah Donato.  Jonah is 40 years old, 5’6” tall and weighs about 160lbs.  He is balding with dark brown hair and may have some facial hair growth.

Jonah is from Saanich but at some point in June, he travelled over to the mainland.  He was last seen in Vancouver’s downtown eastside where it is believed he still is.   We are concerned about his wellbeing and are asking anyone who sees him or knows his whereabouts, to call police.

Donato 1      Donato 2

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Just before 1AM on July 15, 2019, Saanich Police responded to an alarm at a business in the 800 block of Cloverdale Avenue.  Two K9 handlers along with PSD Max were on scene to help and found a broken glass door at the front.  While searching the interior of the business for anyone still inside, PSD Max tracked down a man hiding behind a door.

The presence of Max and his bark was enough for the 28 year old Port Alberni man to comply and be arrested without incident by the officers on the scene.  He now faces a charge of break and enter.

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