Merritt RCMP are searching for a well-known suspect who is wanted for a crime spree that occurred around Merritt overnight on Monday (Jan. 22).

Police received a call from a residnet on Clapperton Avenue at about 9 a.m. the next morning (Jan. 23), reporting the theft of his 2018 Ski-Doo, which is worth about $17,000, said RCMP Const. Tracy Dunsmore.

The owner suggested police obtain video footage from a neighbouring business on Priest Avenue, which, when reviewed, revealed a male suspect rummaging through vehicles on the property.

This suspect is believed to have stolen a pickup truck from a house party he attended in the Bench area earlier that night, after it was reported to police by a fellow partygoer.

“That vehicle actually appeared in the video from Priest Avenue and the male that was driving it fit the description of the suspect that had stolen it,” said Dunsmore. “He is seen coming back later with the same vehicle [and] stops on the street to adjust a snowmobile he has in the back of a pickup truck.”

Dunsmore said the suspect vehicle is also caught on video footage a third time with the snowmobile on a flatbed trailer.

“That trailer hasn’t been reported stolen yet, but we believe that we know where that belongs as well. We’re just waiting for confirmation,” said Dunsmore.

The pickup truck was later returned to the residence it was taken from with the keys in it, but the suspect, the Ski-Doo and trailer were gone, Dunsmore said.

“In the first video he was going through vehicles [on Priest Avenue and] there was no sled on the truck. He came back later and had the sled on the truck, and then came back a third time in the video where he’s hauling a trailer with the sled on the trailer,” said Dunsmore.

The RCMP was also called to the Best Western earlier that night after a BC Hydro vehicle parked there had been broken into between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m.

Police believe the male suspect is responsible for this break-in too, as items taken from this vehicle were found in the stolen pickup, alongside items taken from Priest Avenue.

No snowmobile was observed in security footage obtained from the hotel, but the truck and the suspect male were observed, Dunsmore said.

The suspect is not being named at this time as police have yet to arrest the male and lay charges.

“We haven’t been able to locate him yet,” said Dunsmore.