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Busy week in the backcountry for Whistler Search and Rescue

Police Briefs: Man ‘belligerent’ with restaurant staff after trying to skip bill

The backcountry hasn't been spared the effects of Whistler's busy winter season, with rescue crews sent out on several calls in the past week.

Just after 5 p.m. on Jan. 5, police were notified about a pair snowboarders who were lost near the Cheakamus Forest Service Road.

Whistler Search and Rescue (WSAR) volunteers, who happened to be training when the British boarders went missing, headed out on snowmobiles and located the pair several hours later. Both males, recent arrivals to Whistler, were rescued without injury.

"They were very sorry," said Whistler RCMP Staff Sgt. Steve LeClair. "They had gotten lost on the mountain and now appreciate how dangerous going beyond the ski area boundary can be."

Search and rescue was activated again on Jan. 10 after a male skiing the Whistler Mountain backcountry with a large group of friends fractured his lower leg. Rescue personnel flew in by helicopter to recover the injured man near the Flute-Oboe drainage. He was airlifted to the Whistler Health Care Centre for treatment.

The following evening a woman called police to report that her boyfriend and another man were overdue from a trip in the Blackcomb backcountry. She last heard from him via text just after 3:30 p.m. letting her know he was lost and would be late. Despite attempts by police to track the men's cell phones, they were not found that night.

WSAR was activated the next morning when the 30-year-old Whistler man and his 29-year-old Quebecois companion still had not returned. A helicopter crew located the pair soon after.

"They were a little cold but fine," LeClair noted.

New West man becomes aggressive after trying to skip out on restaurant bill

A New Westminster man is facing several charges after his attempts to skip out on a bill were thwarted by the staff of a local restaurant, police said.

The manager of the village eatery called police on Jan. 5 to report a male patron attempting to leave the premises after refusing to pay his $84 bill. The 25-year-old New Westminster man was reportedly intoxicated and became belligerent with staff after trying to convince staff that he had already paid for his food.

When police arrived, they found the man with "his fists cocked back, in an aggressive stance" towards several restaurant employees who were standing between him and the front door, LeClair said.

He was arrested for causing a disturbance, public intoxication, obtaining food by fraud and assault, police said.