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Courtenay skipper who threatened to kill crewmembers to remain in jail for two weeks

Aug 02 2012

The Courtenay fisherman accused of firing a shotgun after threatening to kill two crewmembers on a fishing boat in remote Island waters will remain in jail for at least another two weeks.

Karl Darwin Keith Thomas, 49, appeared in Campbell River court on Wednesday, charged with assault with a weapon, uttering threats, pointing a firearm and careless use of a firearm. He was remanded into custody until Aug. 13.

Port Hardy RCMP staged a dramatic rescue Sunday night in the remote waters off Browning Passage north of Port Hardy after a woman aboard the Opal T alleged the skipper had assaulted her and a male crewmember and was threatening to kill them. A loaded shotgun was discharged but no one was seriously injured. The pair had to leap onto the bow of the police boat to escape.

There is a publication ban on the name of the victim. While police rescued a 26-year-old woman and 21-year-old man from the boat, only the woman is listed as a victim on the charge information sheet.

Thomas has three adult children in the fishing industry, including a 26-year-old daughter.

RCMP would not comment on the relationship of the crewmembers to the skipper.

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