Man who jumped from BC Ferry arrested on Galiano Island

Sidney RCMP, police dog called after wet, naked man enters a home.

The Spirit of British Columbia was involved in the search for a man who jumped from the Coastal Celebration Nov. 4.

A man who jumped off a BC Ferry in Active Pass and swam to shore on Galiano Island the night of Nov. 4 has been arrested after breaking into a home.

Outer Gulf Islands RCMP spokesperson Sgt. Rod Pick stated in a media release that a naked man, soaking wet, entered a house on Galiano Island and started to throw furniture around, causing damage. A woman in the home left safely and went to a neighbour’s house to call for help.

Pick reported that the witness said the man was incoherent and did not respond to her.

RCMP from the Gulf Island detachment, as well as Sidney officer and a police dog unit went to the area. Pick stated they discovered the man had left the house and walked to a nearby resort, breaking into one of the cabins. The man was taken into custody.

Pick said police had earlier received a call from the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre in Victoria to assist in the possible rescue of a man who had jumped off the Coastal Celebration ferry en route to Swartz Bay from Tswwassen.

Deborah Marshall, executive director of public affairs for BC Ferries said crew and passengers on the Coastal Celebration witnessed a man deploy the life raft and then jump into the water at around 9:30 p.m. A crew member threw a life ring overboard to mark the spot, she said. Both that vessel and the Spirit of British Columbia launched rescue boats to search for the man. Police and the coast guard were called immediately.

“Our crews are highly trained and perform drills all the time,” Marshall said. “This was at night and it put our crew members at risk.”

Forty-five minutes into their search, Marshall said BC Ferries was called by police, notifying them they had arrested a man on Galiano Island, who resembled the description of the person who jumped overboard.

Search and rescue crews with the Canadian military and Coast Guard were also called to assist in the search.

The man arrested on Galiano Island is believed to be the same man who jumped from the ferry. He was sent to Royal Jubille Hospital for an assessment.

The man, according to police, is facing charges of mischief, breaking and entering and more. The RCMP also stated BC Ferries is also considering charges against the man, in relation to the tampering with life-saving equipment.

Marshall said the life raft was large, with a 100-person capacity. It was recovered Thursday after it was found at Mayne Island. She said it would be inspected for damage, as it is not designed to be deployed while a vessel is traveling at 20 knots — which was the speed of the Coastal Celebration at the time of the incident.

There were 333 people on board both BC Ferries’ vessels Wednesday night. Marshall said BC Ferries has more than 180,000 sailings each year and thankfully such incidents are rare. Approximately 10 years ago, someone made a similar jump from a ferry, she said, and swam to Mayne Island. Marshall said their vessels have gates, railings and fencing, however it’s difficult to prevent someone who is determined from jumping.

— with files from the Outer Gulf Islands RCMP

Just Posted

Saanich School District parents welcome end of strike

Various sides of support worker strike acknowledge remaining tensions

Two Sidney seniors struck by vehicle with foggy windows in marked crosswalk

Driver fined for failure to yield, limited visibility caused by foggy windows

Harbour authority to honour Victoria sailor Jeanne Socrates with naming ceremony

In September Socrates became the oldest person to sail around the world in a solo, unassisted trip

VIDEO: The sticky truth about winter moths and how Greater Victoria arborists fight them

Winter moths have ‘killed a lot of trees’ across the region, says Oak Bay arborist

Midget no more: Sweeping division name changes coming to minor hockey in Canada

Alpha-numeric division names will be used for the 2020-2021 season and beyond

B.C. pushes for greater ‘transparency’ in gasoline pricing

Legislation responds to fuel price gap of up to 13 cents

UPDATED: Vancouver Island’s Joe gets suspended sentence in Teddy the dog cruelty case

Melissa Tooshley expected in court on Thursday in same case

B.C. petition calls for seat belts in new school buses

Agassiz bus driver collects 124,000 signatures in support

Nineteen boats carrying invasive mussels stopped at B.C. borders

Waters of Columbia-Shuswap still test mussel-free

Woman ‘horrified’ after being told to trek 200 kilometres home from Kamloops hospital

‘I can’t get from Kamloops back to 100 Mile House injured, confused… no shoes, no clothes whatsoever’

Canadian universities encourage exchange students in Hong Kong to head home

UBC said 11 of its 32 students completing programs in Hong Kong have already left

Most Read