A man who died after being shot by police in a Mill Bay trailer park on Saturday afternoon is now being identified by friends and neighbours as Chris Bloomfield.
Officers from the Shawnigan Lake RCMP were following up on an assault investigation in the 1100 block of Shawnigan-Mill Bay Road, police explained in a press release late Saturday afternoon.
Shortly after noon, officers arrived at a home in the Cedar Creek Mobile Home Park to arrest a man in connection with the assault. When they entered the residence, a man advanced on them with what police described as an “edged weapon.” Officers attempted to subdue him with a Taser, but were unsuccessful. Police then fired shots, hitting the man. He was transported to hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries.
Police have not identified the victim of the shooting but neighbours Josh Archer, Kristyn Seward and Jordan Seward say they knew him well and his name is Chris Bloomfield. Neighbours say the victim lived in the trailer with his mother.
“We went to high school together,” Archer said. “The cops had been here many times to deal with him. I didn’t hang out with him or anything. He didn’t work and was a party type of guy.
“He’d live here for awhile and then get kicked out. He was kind of in and out.”
Bloomfield’s Facebook page is populated with a variety of posts of spiritual representations and psychedlic imagery. In one rambling post dated Nov. 8 he talks about taking drugs, including mushrooms, LSD and ketamine while partying at a “hippy commune”. He talks about visions he experienced. Disturbingly, he describes in the post being sexually assaulted and beaten up and restrained.
Bloomfield was charged in 2013 with assault, a charge on which he was convicted.
Neighbours say they first saw RCMP officers outside their trailer and watched them as they checked out the numbers on the trailers.
“I saw two cops standing by my tree,” Kristyn Seward recalled. “Then they walked to the neighbours and I heard one of them say, ‘This is the place’. A few minutes later I heard four shots.”
Archer also heard the four shots.
“It seemed odd because I didn’t see anybody running or anything after I heard the shots,” Archer said.
“The ambulance came, two of them, one was an advance life support (ambulance) and I watched them wheel him out on a stretcher. Then the ambulance left with the lights on but no siren .”
By then, Archer says, there were several police vehicles on the scene.
The neighbours say they don’t believe the man’s Bloomfield’s mother was at home at the time of the shooting.
No police officers nor any other members of the public were injured.
The Independent Investigation Office of BC has been notified and will assume responsibility for the investigation. Additional RCMP resources have been deployed to Shawingan Lake in order to maintain core policing services.
Police were still at the scene late into the evening Saturday night.
Witnesses are asked to contact the IIO BC at 1-855-446-8477.
More information to come as it becomes available.