A massive three-hour search and rescue operation for a man believed to be in distress and missing in Victoria's inner harbour Wednesday afternoon ended with that man's arrest on several outstanding warrants, according to Victoria police.
At around 4:20 p.m. Wednesday, police were called to the harbour after a person was reportedly seen slipping into the water on the south side of the Johnson Street Bridge, a police statement said.
The sprawling search involved several agencies including the city's police force, the Victoria Fire Department, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, the Coast Guard, and the Saanich police dive team, the statement said.
One officer who jumped into the water to search for the man for a "significant" amount of time had to be treated for exposure to the cold, it said.
First man, then warrants surface
Despite the massive effort, police said the man was not found until around 7:30 p.m., when he finally surfaced on his own.
Paramedics treated him at the scene, and he was arrested and detained overnight to appear in court Thursday morning.
In the course of the investigation, police said they spoke with a witness who told them the man had intentionally jumped into the water.
"He stepped into the water but we're really not sure why," said VIcPD spokesperson Bowen Osoko.
According to police, the man was in distress as soon as he entered the water and immediately began calling for help.
Police say the man faces numerous charges including assault, forcible entry, assaulting a police officer causing bodily harm and uttering threats.
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call the Victoria Police Department.