Kimberley RCMP are actively investigating three separate reports that rocks were being thrown at vehicles along Highway 95A at the edge of city limits on Sunday, damaging one vehicle.
Patrols attended the scene upon each report, not locating any suspects on the first two incidents. A suspect was later identified after a vehicle ended up being damaged on the third report of rocks being thrown.
"It's very crucial that we get witnesses in this type of thing," said Sgt. Chris Newel, Kimberley RCMP Detachment Commander. "You have to be able to say exactly who threw that particular rock that caused that particular damage."
Newel noted that there was speculation and extensive comments on social media about the rock throwing incidents, noting that a lot of the information was inaccurate and actually hampers their investigation. Although appreciating the public's comments about the potential severity of the incidents, Newel said the harsh comments can deter witnesses from coming forward or people taking responsibility, both of which would help police resolve the incident.
The Teck Railway Bridge was not the location of the rock-throwing incidents as indicated on social media, as Kimberley RCMP confirming that the area was fully closed off and that access to the bridge was not compromised. Newel said there is a little outcropping below the bridge and that it was quite clear that was where the subjects were at the time they were allegedly hurling the rocks down at the vehicles.
"We understand there was more than one person present but we really can only deal with the person who actually did it in that case," Newel told Summit 107. "We will be dealing with all of the persons that have been identified, that have been there and the parties, with respect to the danger and the potential risk of what was going on."
Newel said all of the allegations will be dealt with through the appropriate channels and that parents will be involved, fully appreciating the danger of rocks being thrown at vehicles and potential for serious injuries.
Criminal charges and civil liability could potentially be forthcoming as Kimberley RCMP continues to investigate the matter and as they actively speak with the affected parties, although police wouldn't be directly involved in any civil resolutions.
Audio: Sgt. Chris Newel, Kimberley RCMP Detachment Commander (on social media discussion about the incidents)