Columbia Valley RCMP Report
This past week, May 21 through to May 27, Columbia Valley RCMP responded to 75 calls for service. Here are a few examples of the files that were handled by our officers this week.
ITunes gift card payment to Canada Revenue Agency scam
On May 25, Columbia Valley RCMP took a report of a male who had been defrauded of nearly $2,000. The male indicated that he received what he believed to be a phone call from the Canada Revenue Agency who stated he got audited for the last five years and had to pay within the next hour or else there would be an arrest warrant for his arrest. The male complied by the deadline and failed to fact check and obliged by buying several ITunes gift cards.
Impaired driver given 90-day prohibition
On May 26, at approximately 2:25 a.m., officers with the Columbia Valley RCMP were on patrol in the area of 8th Avenue and 13th Street in Invermere and observed a white Mercedes SUV failing to stop at a stop sign in the area. Officers quickly turned around and found the vehicle parked on the side of the street with all occupants out and walking away. All four occupants were spoken to and quickly identified their driver as one of them. The identified male was adamant that his friends were wrong and a fifth person ran away. The male indicated that he had drinks that evening and had to provide a sample of his breath. The first sample was a fail and the right to a second attempt was deemed to be withdrawn after 11 failed attempts to provide a sample. The driver was issued a 90-days Immediate Road Prohibition and the vehicle was impounded for 90-days.
Deer versus motorcycle in KNP
On May 27, Columbia Valley RCMP and emergency services were called for a collision between a motorcycle and a deer in Kootenay National Park. A witness saw the deer jump out on the highway and the motorcyclist attempted to avoid the deer but was unable to do so and collided with same. The driver was taken to the Invermere & District Hospital and then later transferred to the Kelowna area in order to address his non-life threatening injuries.
Canada Revenue Agency scams
Last week was marked with numerous visits and calls to our office from concerned citizens regarding cold call from individuals identifying themselves as Canada Revenue Agency employees. We had to re-assure a few people that there were no arrest warrants for tax evasion nor that the RCMP will break down their doors. One caller also reported that the fraudster had used our office telephone number to hide their numbers. Our officers do not have any information about your taxes.
The following advice should be taken in consideration if you want to re-assure yourself that you are actually speaking with an actual Canada Revenue Tax agent:
- never requests prepaid credit cards;
- never asks for information about your passport, health card, or driver’s licence;
- never shares your taxpayer information with another person, unless you have provided the appropriate authorization; and
- never leaves personal information on your answering machine or asks you to leave a message containing your personal information on an answering machine.
When in doubt, ask yourself the following:
- Is there a reason that the CRA may be calling? Do I have a tax balance outstanding?
- Is the requester asking for information I would not include with my tax return?
- How did the requester get my email address or telephone number?
- Am I confident I know who is asking for the information?
Cpl. Gendron-Fafard will be away for the next couple of weeks due to being deployed for security details at the G7 summit in Charlevoix region in Quebec.
– Cpl. L-P. Gendron-Fafard is a member of the Columbia Valley RCMP Detachment