Man charged after bear spray discharged in Yellowknife apartment building

An RCMP patrol vehicle. (CKLB file photo.)

A Yellowknife man faces a slew of charges after an entire apartment building in Yellowknife had to be evacuated in the middle of the night after numerous residents suffered from an exposure to bear spray.

According to the RCMP, just past midnight on Wednesday, Yellowknife RCMP received a report of several people inside a unit at Sunridge Apartments on 51A Avenue, who had been sprayed with bear spray.

Additional calls were received about more residents being affected by the substance, including a woman having difficulty breathing.

Police officers requested assistance from Emergency Medical Services (EMS) which arrived shortly after on site.

Several residents were already outside in the parking lot, suffering the effects of bear spray.

RCMP officers proceeded with the evacuation of the building in an extremely difficult environment, as the entrance way and first floor were heavily contaminated with bear spray.

Officers extracted an unconscious female on the first floor.

Several people were examined by EMS and no one required medical treatment.

The City of Yellowknife Fire Division were called on scene to use pressure fans to decontaminate the building.

Yellowknife RCMP arrested and charged Cory Sarasin, 31 from Yellowknife, with:

  • Five counts of Assault with weapon
  • Possession of weapon for dangerous purpose
  • Common Nuisance Cause injury
  • Three counts of Weapons possession contrary to order
  • Fail to comply probation order

Anyone with information on this incident is asked to call Yellowknife RCMP at 669-1111, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477, (click on “submit a web tip”) or text: “nwtnutips” plus your message to 274637.

(With files from Francis Tessier-Burns)

About the Author

John McFadden
John has been in the broadcast journalism industry since the 1980s. He has been a reporter in Yellowknife since 2012 and joined CKLB in January of 2018. John covers the crime and court beat as well as reporting on other areas including politics, business, entertainment and sports. He won seven national community newspaper awards while he was a journalist with Northern News Services Limited (NNSL). John worked in Ontario before coming North including stints as a TV sportscaster in Peterborough and senior news writer for CBC and CTV in downtown Toronto.