Police Report: Snowmobiler thief takes joyride through back yards

Police Report from the Smithers detachment for Jan. 8.

  • Jan. 16, 2012 2:00 p.m.

Jan. 8

Twenty-three-year-old Ryan Laidlaw was caught and charged in connection to the theft of a snowmobile in Telkwa. RCMP said that they responded to a report that someone had broken into a shed on the 1300 block of Fir Street in Telkwa and took a 2009 Polaris snowmobile. Witnesses said they saw and heard a snowmobile driving down Coalmine Road.

The suspect was allegedly seen as he rode through several back yards, damaging landscaping as he went. A short time later, the snowmobile’s owner found his snowmobile on a pathway leading from Coalmine Road up to the Woodland Subdivision. Police later located the suspect and took him to the RCMP detachment in Smithers. Laidlaw is facing charges of possession of stolen property, break and enter, mischief and dangerous operation of a motor vehicle.

Also on Jan. 8, RCMP reported that there was a break-in on the 1600 block of Cottonwood Street in Telkwa. The homeowner found a broken bedroom window where the suspect allegedly crawled through, before knocking over a floor lamp, breaking it. A Playstation 3 video game console was taken and the suspect left through the front door. Police are looking for anyone with information on this incident to call them at 250-847-3233 or call Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Police were also called on a report of a single vehicle incident on Lake Kathlyn Road and Gelley Road in Smithers. The owner of a 2005 black Ford F-150 reported that she had collided with a pole and knocked out power. She told police that she lost control driving on Gelley Road towards Lake Kathlyn Road and traveled through the intersection, and collided with the telephone pole. The collision broke a wire on an adjacent BC Hydro pole. There were no injuries and the driver was the only person in the vehicle. Road conditions were extremely icy due to freezing rain on the roadway and was determined to be the main contributing factor. Alcohol was not a factor.


The Smithers RCMP have received numerous complaints about snowmobiling in the Town of Smithers and in rural areas. The police want to remind the public that snowmobiles are considered vehicles under the Motor Vehicle Act and therefore are subject to enforcement under those laws.

Also, the RCMP have received several reports of counterfeit $50 and $20 bills at local businesses. The serial numbers suggest they came from the same source, though there is not indication that they originated in Smithers. The RCMP remind the public that passing counterfeit bank notes is an Criminal Code offence and that if the bill does not look or feel quite right, people should examine it closely for security features. Those features are explained online at bankofcanada.ca/banknotes.