A Nanaimo RCMP Auxiliary Constable sprung into action Friday to pull a man from the chilly water at Maffeo Sutton Park.
Auxiliary Constable Darren Marshall and Auxiliary Constable Rob Sampson were finishing up foot patrols in the area around 7:00pm when they saw a man step off the fishing pier and into the water. Constable Gary O’Brien of Nanaimo RCMP says the man caught their eye after he pushed past them on the pier.
Marshall yelled out to ask if he needed help but the man was floating on his back and didn’t respond. When he started floating further from the dock, the officers realized something was seriously wrong.
Marshall took off his portable radio and jumped into the water without hesitation. He swam out about 3 metres out to grab the man and towed him back to the pier.
The man was lifted out of the water by Sampson, with help from several bystanders. He didn’t struggle but it was clear he was distraught and needed medical attention. The man was taken to Nanaimo Regional General Hospital for a psychiatric evaluation.
“This is a perfect example of the commitment and quality of service these volunteer police officers provide to the City of Nanaimo” said Constable Gary O’Brien.
To be an auxiliary officer in BC, volunteers take part in extensive classroom and practical training over the course of several months. They must contribute a minimum commitment of 160 volunteer hours each year. If you are interested in knowing more about the auxiliary police officer program, contact your local RCMP Detachment.