A suspected gang member is under arrest after fighting with transit police and attempting to throw away a loaded handgun in the underground Metrotown parking lot in Burnaby on Tuesday.
Metro Vancouver Transit Police say they approached Luis Manual Baez, 23, for smoking marijuana in contravention of the Cannabis Control Act, but as they were talking to him he bolted to a nearby car and tried to drive away.
Officers pulled him out of the car and a struggle ensued. During the struggle officers say Baez pulled a semi-automatic .45-calibre gun out of his waistband and threw it under a car.
The Surrey man is charged with one count of obstruction and multiple firearms offences.
Police say he is known to them and remains in custody.
"We are happy to have taken another firearm off the streets and out of the hands of an alleged gang member," said Metro Vancouver Transit Police spokesman Clint Hampton.
The arrest was not a coordinated effort involving other police agencies investigating the escalating gang conflict in the region, according to Hampton.
He said it is common for transit police to patrol malls and parking lots around transit lines.