Police continue to investigate a break and enter and subsequent arrests on Highway 97 in Prince George that occurred on Wednesday, July 17.
Investigators have confirmed the vehicle that the two suspects were in was reported stolen to Quesnel RCMP on July 11, according to a press release from the Prince George RCMP. Following the arrests of the two suspects, two firearms were seized at the scene.
Forty-one-year-old Jamie Hal Hammerstrom of Hixon and 33-year-old John Robert Craig of Dawson Creek have been charged with break and enter to steal a firearm, disguise with intent to commit an indictable offence, unauthorized possession of a firearm in a motor vehicle (two counts), and possession of a firearm without a licence.
Hammerstrom has also been charged with possession of property obtained by crime under $5,000, possession of a firearm or ammunition while prohibited (three counts), and possession of a controlled substance.
Both accused appeared in court on Thursday, July 18 and were remanded in custody until their next court date, which is scheduled for Wednesday, July 24, according to the press release.
The residence on Mountainview Road has been the target of two previous break and enters this year, according to the RCMP.
Police received the first report on May 9 during the mid-afternoon. Three firearms and an extensive list of other items were stolen, along with a pickup truck. The truck was located in Vernon, and a 27-year-old Prince George man was arrested as a result. Although charges have not yet been approved, the investigation is continuing, according to the press release.
The property was again broken into on the afternoon of June 27, and police say it appears that nothing was stolen.
“The audible alarm likely scared off culprits,” according to the press release.
Police encourage all property owners to acquire quality video surveillance and to take the necessary steps to secure and protect their property. They encourage property owners to ensure their property is secured and take the following steps to deter thieves:
• Record serial numbers or engrave your driver’s licence number on valuables;
• Take pictures of property and store the files on a disk;
• Report suspicious activity at all hours of the day;
• Get to know your neighbours and keep an eye on their property;
• Use security systems, cameras and other deterrents;
• Keep your doors locked, even if you are in the back yard;
• Lock you sheds and out building and secure property that you store inside;
• Close and lock your windows each time you leave your home, even in hot weather;
• Register your bicycles on the ‘529 Garage’ on-line program;
• Lock your vehicle doors and use an anti-theft device;
• When possible, do not leave valuables in your vehicle. If you must, leave them out of sight;
• Never leave your wallet, purse, identification or keys in a vehicle.
Many neighbourhoods have set up community watch groups and use social media or other platforms to communicate with each other.
The Prince George RCMP are looking for information to help identify and locate people involved in property crimes. If you have any information, contact the Prince George RCMP at 250-561-3300 or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online at pgcrimestoppers.bc.ca.