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Mountie who stopped man from lighting Burnaby gas station on fire earns policing award

Burnaby RCMP Const. Karanjit Dulay and RCMP Sgt. Brett Cunningham were recognized for 'meritorious service' at the 39th annual Police Honours Night in Victoria last month.

A local Mountie who stopped a man from lighting a Burnaby gas station on fire and another local officer who talked a man out of hanging himself from a highway overpass have won awards for meritorious service. 

On Feb. 16, 2020, Burnaby RCMP Const. Karanjit Dulay responded to a call at about 5:30 a.m. at Smart Gas in the 6800 block of Canada Way.

There were reports of a man trying to light a fire at the gas station, according to a police news release at the time. 

At the scene, Dulay saw a man trying to ignite a gas hose with a lighter, police said.

The man kept trying to light a fire despite being confronted, according to police, and a video posted on social media showed Dulay grappling with him and taking him into custody.

He was apprehended under the Mental Health Act. 

Dulay was recognized at the 39th annual Police Honours Night at Government House in Victoria last month for his actions that morning. 

“This incident could have resulted in serious injury or death to anyone nearby,” stated the commendation. “Notwithstanding this danger, Const. Dulay put himself at great risk to save a potential catastrophe.”

Another local Mountie was recognized for talking a distraught man off a ledge at a Burnaby overpass.

On Oct. 4, 2018, just after 8 a.m., then-Cpl. Brett Cunningham responded to a call involving a suicidal male with a noose around his neck on a Highway 1 overpass.

Cunningham began to talk to the man and positioned himself so he would be able to take hold of him in the event he tried to jump. 

Using de-escalation techniques, Cunningham convinced the man to come back over the railing and remove the noose. The man was taken into custody under the Mental Health Act. 

“Cpl. Cunningham utilized his experience and training to successfully apprehend the male,” stated the commendation. 

Dulay and Cunningham were among 154 law enforcement personnel recognized for bravery and dedication last month. 

Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth and Lieutenant Governor Janet Austin presented the awards. 

Follow Cornelia Naylor on Twitter @CorNaylor
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