Landing a helicopter or parking a monster truck on private property are not crimes.
That was the message from the Coquitlam RCMP Wednesday, days after a raucous party in Anmore that featured multiple ‘copters, high-end sports cars and several visits from police.
And Cpl. Michael McLaughlin said there is not much officers can do if party organizer Justin Plosz moves ahead with plans to hold a similar event at a home on Marine Avenue in Belcarra — this time with yachts and a monster truck.
The RCMP needs to see evidence that crimes are being committed if they are going to arrest people, McLaughlin said.
“It is not illegal to land a helicopter in a private residence with permission,” McLaughlin said, adding it’s also not illegal to park “a shiny monster truck” on a private driveway.
Despite someone at the party having to be resuscitated after an overdose, Mounties did not see illegal drugs being consumed, he said. There was also no evidence of street racing when police arrived and no tickets were issued for illegal parking.
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Earlier this week, Plosz told The Tri-City News that last Saturday’s bash at the Birch Wynde property he had been renting for over a year was a “networking event.” He has since moved out of the home and called the weekend party “the grand finale.”
He also said he was planning another event at a home in Belcarra.
“We can park some yachts there,” he said. “We are planning on renting monster trucks for that one.”
Plosz’ plans are not sitting well with Belcarra’s mayor.
Neil Belenkie confirmed party organizers have moved to a home on Marine Avenue overlooking Bedwell Bay and said he was concerned upon hearing that another event is being planned for his community.
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But he added there could be ways to responsibly hold a party without compromising safety and bothering residents. He is concerned the organizers will be looking to top their last event and said he would rather work with them to make sure things are done safely and with minimal disruption to residents.
“The way it was done in Anmore was unacceptable,” Belenkie said. “That can’t happen and it won’t happen in Belcarra.”
He added that an event permit could be issued at a cost of upwards of $500,000. If the organizers wanted to land helicopters again, they would require a barge, which could mean even more money for the municipality, Belenkie said.
But the first-term mayor said safety was “non-negotiable” and that some of the money for the permit helps “offset the inconvenience to the neighbourhood.”
“I would rather be talking to them about doing it right than fighting them,” he said, later adding: “Safety is non-negotiable, which is why I’d rather be working with these guys to do it safely.”
Belenkie’s tone was markedly different from his counterpart in Anmore, John McEwen, who was furious after Saturday’s party.
He said the village council would be looking into the matter and questioned how people were legally allowed to land helicopters on residential property.
“It is certainly not something we want to be proud of,” he said. “It certainly caused quite an uproar in the community.”
McEwen said the owner of the home, which land title documents show is registered to a Jing Sun, is an offshore investor who rents out the property. He added that he is concerned not enough due diligence is being done when screening tenants.
“The neighbours are just like ‘What is going on here?'” he said. “I can assure you the village is going to be taking this very seriously.”
– With files from Diane Strandberg