BRITISH COLUMBIA

BC Wildfires 2017: 10 Arrested For Looting And Mischief In Evacuated Areas

The RCMP is sending 300 extra officers to patrol empty neighbourhoods.

07/11/2017 20:50 EDT | Updated 07/11/2017 20:51 EDT
B.C. RCMP
The British Columbia RCMP has arrested 10 people for break and enter, breach and mischief in evacuated areas.

Evacuated homes have been broken into as wildfires burn across British Columbia, the RCMP said on Tuesday.

Police have arrested 10 people for break and enter, breach and mischief, RCMP Deputy Commissioner Brenda Butterworth-Carr said. Most of the suspects lived in the area and were already known to police.

Jonathan Hayward/Canadian Press
The area of Boston Flats, B.C. is pictured on Tuesday after a wildfire ripped through the area earlier in the week.

One wife and husband went to check on their Williams Lake home and discovered that their TV, shotguns, jewellery and food had been stolen.

"How can you do that to somebody who's already going through such stress and then come when they're most vulnerable and take their stuff?" Tracy Roy told CBC News. "We're going through enough."​

There are more than 200 fires burning across the province. The most aggressive are in Williams Lake, Ashcroft, Cache Creek, 100 Mile House and Princeton, Butterworth-Carr said.

The RCMP is deploying 300 extra officers to patrol evacuated neighbourhoods 24 hours a day, manage traffic, and help with evacuations.

"This is an unprecedented situation and one that continues to rapidly change," Butterworth-Carr said. At least two RCMP officers have lost their own homes in the blazes, she said.

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