KAMLOOPS, B.C. - A Kamloops, B.C., man whose actions caused police to lock down a neighbourhood and issue a public warning about the use of imitation firearms has been handed a three-month conditional sentence.
Raymond Volpatti will be under house arrest for the first two months of his sentence.
“There was real fear by your neighbour — and rightly so,” provincial court judge Stella Frame told Volpatti, who pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm contrary to an order.
He has a prior criminal record and was given a 10-year firearm ban in 2009.
Crown lawyer Monica Fras said a neighbour of Volpatti’s saw him outside his home on the afternoon of June 16, waving a handgun and attempting to fire it in the air.
RCMP responded and cordoned off the area.
The gun turned out to be a BB pistol, a replica nine-millimetre handgun.
Volpatti and two other men were arrested — one for possession of drugs and the other for possession of what police called a stun gun.
Following the incident, Mounties held a news conference warning they are forced to treat any toy weapon as the real thing in an emergency and that could lead to fatal consequences for the person wielding it.
Jay Michi, an articling student representing Volpatti, said the 46-year-old former logger has not worked since suffering a head injury more than 20 years ago.
“Mr. Volpatti is an alcoholic, a rather severe alcoholic,” Michi said.
“On this occasion, he invited trouble into his life.”
Volpatti is forbidden from drinking alcohol during his 90-day conditional sentence, but Frame did not extend the ban on alcohol or drugs to his one-year probation period that follows. (Kamloops This Week)