Men testing scoped rifles cause alarm near Panama Flats

Two men brandishing long-barrelled pellet guns were arrested and released without charges Monday after a tense morning for Saanich police in Panama Flats.

Two men brandishing long-barrelled pellet guns were arrested and released without charges Monday after a tense morning for Saanich police in Panama Flats.

Police were called around 10:15 a.m. by an area resident reporting two men walking through the park carrying guns.

Officers set up a containment in the area and quickly found the men, who were arrested without incident.

“We were quite quickly able to realize they were pellet rifles, but they had scopes on them,” said Sgt. Dean Jantzen. “From a distance, they’re certainly very realistic looking.”

The pair told police they were trying to sight their rifles to the scopes.

“This is not an appropriate activity in a park, nor are you allowed to do that in Saanich,” Jantzen said. “We take all situations like that very seriously until we can determine it’s not a real firearm.”

A Saanich man and an Esquimalt man, both in their 30s, were released and will not be charged with any criminal or bylaw offences.

kslavin@saanichnews.com