Langley homeless citizens are desperate for somewhere warm to spend both night and day. (Black Press Media file photo)

B.C. man gets arrested to get into warm jail cell

With Langley’s shelter at capacity, the homeless are seeking anywhere to get out of the cold.

A homeless person arrested in Metro Vancouver on the weekend told police he simply wanted to get out of the cold.

Langley RCMP officers have been busy getting homeless locals somewhere warm after temperatures plunged in the middle of the weekend, said spokesperson Cpl. Holly Largy.

Officers have even driven people as far as shelters in neighbouring Surrey that are open during the day, unlike Langley shelters such as the Salvation Army’s Gateway of Hope, Largy said.

One arrested man told police he just wanted to get inside.

“He said he purposely committed a crime so he could go to jail to be warm,” Largy said.

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The Langley Gateway of Hope has been at maximum capacity for the past few nights, said the shelter’s Julie Gilfillan.

“We don’t have a drop-in centre, unfortunately,” she said.

Although the shelter is allowing more people to stay in the waiting area than normal, there isn’t room to accommodate everyone on Langley’s streets all day long. That’s an estimated 200 people.

Some people are moving around to the places that are open, Gilfillan said. “They’re going to a library, to a coffee shop, to wherever to stay warm.”

Environment Canada has issued an Arctic outflow warning for the Fraser Valley.

Following light snow across much of Metro Vancouver on Sunday, temperatures are expected to remain below freezing for several days.

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