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North Vancouver courthouse standoff ends with peaceful surrender

A standoff on the North Vancouver courthouse steps ended peacefully after a distraught man had been holding a knife to his throat.
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 North Vancouver RCMP outside the courthouse on Wednesday morning. Photo: Mike Wakefield/ North Shore NewsNorth Vancouver RCMP outside the courthouse on Wednesday morning. Photo: Mike Wakefield / North Shore News

A standoff on the North Vancouver courthouse steps ended peacefully after a distraught man who had been holding a knife to his throat surrendered shortly after noon.

The North Vancouver courthouse and surrounding blocks were locked down this morning as North Vancouver RCMP dealt with the man.

Witnesses say a man with a knife had been on the courthouse steps. The RCMP’s emergency response team was on the scene along with police negotiators.

Meanwhile, public buildings including the Harry Jerome Rec Centre, Flicka Gymnastics and North Shore Alliance Church were put into lockdown.

Yesterday a man was protesting with a placard outside the courts.

 A man is taken into custody by heavily armed police offers following a standoff on the steps of the North Vancouver courthouse Wednesday, July 10. Photo: Mike Wakefield / North Shore NewsA man is taken into custody by heavily armed police offers following a standoff on the steps of the North Vancouver courthouse Wednesday, July 10. Photo: Mike Wakefield / North Shore News

“It sounds like it’s the same gentleman and it’s just escalated,” said Crystal, one witness who was caught in the church parking lot just as the incident began around 11:30 a.m. “There are a lot of police on scene. There are police dogs. There are people with their guns drawn. It’s quite tense, it seems.”

There are lot of kids’ camps happening in the neighbourhood but a church staffer said the kids are doing well inside.

 North Vancouver RCMP outside the courthouse on Wednesday morning. Photo: Mike Wakefield / North Shore NewsNorth Vancouver RCMP outside the courthouse on Wednesday morning. Photo: Mike Wakefield / North Shore News