All but one Schoolhouse Squatter released pending court appearances

By NanaimoNewsNOW Staff
October 9, 2018 - 2:51pm

RCMP say 26 of the 27 people arrested for allegedly breaking into Rutherford Elementary was released.Eric Di Giacomo/Insomniac Media

NANAIMO — All but one of the squatters who allegedly broke into and occupied a closed Nanaimo elementary school is out of custody.

Nanaimo RCMP said 26 of the 27 people arrested for breaking and entering and mischief at Rutherford Elementary were released on promises to appear for a court date on Dec. 11.

Police said one man was held in custody, set to appear in court on Tuesday, Oct. 9, due to outstanding warrants for other criminal matters.

Because the suspects have not been formally charged their names can't be released.

The protesters were taken into custody on Saturday afternoon after a large and coordinated operation led by the RCMP's tactical and emergency response teams. Police said the arrests took place without incident and there were no injuries reported.

The demonstration, which began Friday evening when a group of people broke into and refused to leave the empty school, was organized by the Alliance Against Displacement and local activists who were also involved in creating Discontent City.

Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools board chair Steve Rae estimated at least $100,000 in damage to the school, saying the building was littered with suspected drugs, needles, weapons and tools.


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