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Trail police plagued by panhandlers

Trail RCMP are asking people being pestered by aggressive panhandling to contact police, according to Trail top cop Sgt. Mike Wicentowich.

"On May 17, the Trail and Greater District Detachment RCMP received two separate complaints of five people allegedly aggressively panhandling in downtown Trail," Wicentowich said. "The RCMP located three of the five people believed to be responsible. The three people were spoken to by the RCMP and left the area. The remaining two people were not located as they had left the scene after the RCMP were contacted. 

He said this can become a serious issue for local business owners.

"They are going downtown in front of a local grocery store and asking clients going in and out for money," he said. "When the owners ask them to leave, they don't comply and sometimes respond aggressively."

He added they can also be intimidating for the store's clientelle.

He said, in this case, all five are local and well-known to police.

"We speak to them on a daily basis," he said.

He said he's concerned that some people aren't reporting this behaviour because they don't want to bother police, or because they think there's nothing that can/will be done.

"We want people to call and let us know when this is happening," he said. "We will come down and remove them from private property."

Please contact the Trail and Greater District Detachment RCMP at 250-364-2566 to report on aggressive panhandling.