Brody Peterson said he intends to dispute tickets issued by Grand Forks RCMP at his backyard “house warming” Saturday, Oct. 10. Photo: Laurie TritschlerBrody Peterson told The Gazette he intends to dispute tickets issued by Grand Forks RCMP at his backyard “house warming” Saturday, Oct. 10. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Brody Peterson said he intends to dispute tickets issued by Grand Forks RCMP at his backyard “house warming” Saturday, Oct. 10. Photo: Laurie Tritschler Brody Peterson told The Gazette he intends to dispute tickets issued by Grand Forks RCMP at his backyard “house warming” Saturday, Oct. 10. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

‘This is a big outdoor space’: Grand Forks man behind backyard party to fight COVID tickets

Homeowner Brody Peterson said he’ll dispute tickets for refusing police instructions, alleged COVID violations

Police are recommending criminal charges against a Grand Forks man who hosted a backyard party featuring live bands at his property near the American border Saturday, Oct. 10.

Grand Forks RCMP were called to the party between 7:30 and 8 p.m., after neighbours called 9-1-1 to complain about loud music they said had been playing for hours.

According to Cpl. Breadon Thomas, police returned about 90 minutes later, finding “around 60 people” in front of a stage on the accused’s property. A band was playing loud music, despite clear instructions by police to shut down the party.

RELATED: 3 more COVID-19 cases in Interior Health, cluster outbreak in Merritt

Thomas said the crowd wasn’t socially distanced and people weren’t wearing masks. A binder left out for guests’ contact-tracing information had been left empty, he added.

The homeowner was given two $230 tickets. The first for “refusing to comply” with police, the second for allegedly violating the COVID-related Measures Act, which limits outdoor gatherings to 50 people.

Thomas withheld the man’s name pending charges by Crown prosecutors, but homeowner Brody Peterson told The Gazette that he intends to fight both tickets.

Speaking from his home on Friday, Oct. 15, Peterson weighed his outdoor “house warming” against a notoriously crowded house party that netted a $2,300 fine by Victoria police in August.

“I’m not some punk kid in Victoria having an apartment party. This is a big outdoor space,” he said, pointing to his backyard.

READ MORE: VicPD issues $2,300 violation ticket to host of large party in one-bedroom suite

Peterson said he’d invited up to 25 friends and family members to celebrate his recent home purchase.

“It wasn’t advertised. No one was charged to come here. No bands were paid. It wasn’t a ‘rock concert.’ It just wasn’t like that.”

Guests were told to come in and out of his backyard through separately designated gates, he said. People were offered hand sanitizer and masks, but Peterson said people felt uncomfortable giving their contact information after police arrived.

He said he refused to break up the party when told by police because he was worried people drinking on his property weren’t fit to drive.

“They just wanted everyone to go home, and I said, ‘Well, I don’t think we should scramble everyone. If people are under the influence, we need to find them safe ways of getting home: I’ll call every taxi in town and find every designated driver here.’”

Sound engineer Tom Plotnikoff said he’d set up stage amplifiers that were roughly as powerful as a bar room karaoke set.

“I’m sure some of the COVID protocols weren’t followed,” he said, noting between six and 10 people were “moshing” near the stage toward the end of the night. There was “no rowdiness” at the party, but Plotnikoff qualified that Peterson’s “good intentions” were perhaps marred by “poor execution.”

Peterson’s neighbours were generally upset. The Gazette spoke to around a dozen people at eight nearby addresses, most of whom said they weren’t told about the party.

The consensus was that the noise didn’t stop until around 11:30 p.m., roughly half an hour past the noise bylaw cut-off.

Peterson said the music was turned off by 11 p.m.

“One thing I do regret is not telling absolutely everyone in this neighbourhood that I was going to throw a party,” he said.

Peterson has one month to pay or dispute his tickets.

On Oct. 16, Interior Health stated there are currently 28 COVID-19 cases active and in isolation. Two people are in hospital. No one is in ICU.

This brings the total number of cases in the health region, since the start of the pandemic, to 590.

No criminal charges have been laid against Peterson as of Monday, Oct. 19.


@ltritsch1
laurie.tritschler@grandforksgazette.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CoronavirusGrand ForksRCMP

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tsawaayuus Rainbow Gardens is a multi-level care facility for seniors, located on Russell Place in Port Alberni. (ELENA RARDON/ Alberni Valley News)
Third case of COVID-19 confirmed at Tsawaayuus Rainbow Gardens

Second resident diagnosed with illness from Nov. 16 outbreak

The Ahousaht First Nation confirmed its first case of COVID-19 on Nov. 26, 2020. (Westerly file photo)
Ahousaht First Nation on lockdown over COVID-19

“Emotions are high. The anxiety is high. We want our community to pull through.”

A sign at the entrance to Ty-Histanis asks visitors to stay out of the community during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Andrew Bailey photo)
Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation announces lockdown after member tests positive for COVID-19

Essential travel only and restricted to Tofino and Ucluelet.

Joe and Della Drinkwater pose for a formal portrait circa 1898. The Drinkwater name has been a noted one since the 1800s, and numerous landmarks and streets are named for different family members. Drinkwater Creek at the headwaters to Great Central Lake was named for Joe Drinkwater, who had a number of mining claims in the Drinkwater Valley. Joe named Della Falls—the highest waterfall in British Columbia—after his wife Della (née Fayette). The couple was married in December 1899. This photo is one of 24,000 in the Alberni Valley Museum’s online archives, available for public viewing at https://portalberni.pastperfectonline.com. (PHOTO PN01129 COURTESY AV MUSEUM)
A LOOK BACK: Joe Drinkwater carves a name for himself in the Alberni Valley

Take a peek at the history of the Alberni Valley with the AV Museum

The Harbourview Apartments on Third Avenue (popularly referred to as “The Frigstad”). ELENA RARDON PHOTO
Port Alberni city council to discuss Harbourview Apartments in-camera

Owner of the property failed to meet Nov. 12 deadline

Mary Cox and Jack Plant dance in their pyjamas and slippers at the morning pyjama dance during the Rhythm Reelers’ 25 Annual Rally in the Valley Square Dance Festival in Chilliwack on June 4, 2011. Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020 is Square Dancing Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Nov. 29 to Dec. 5

Square Dancing Day, Disability Day and International Ninja Day are all coming up this week

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

Kevin Bieksa during his days playing with the Vancouver Canucks. (Photo: commons.wikimedia.org)
Bieksa to guest on free Canucks Alumni ‘Hot Stove’ on Zoom app

Former NHL player has become a game analyst on Sportsnet

A small crash in the water south of Courtenay Saturday afternoon. Two men had to be rescued, but reports indicate there were no serious injuries. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Small plane crash in Comox Valley waters Saturday afternoon

Two rescued from plane that had flipped in water; no serious injuries reported

Vees goalkeeper Yaniv Perets stands watch while Tyler Ho takes the puck around the back of the net on Nov. 7. The BCHL press release did not name the player who tested positive.(Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Penticton Vees quarantining after player tests positive for COVID-19

The team, staff and billets are isolating while they are tested

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A photo from 2017, of Nuchatlaht First Nation members outside court after filing a land title case in B.C. ( Submitted photo/Nuchatlaht First Nation).
Vancouver Island First Nation calls on B.C. to honour UNDRIP in historic title case

Nuchatlaht First Nation says Crown counsel continues to stall the case using the ‘distasteful’ argument that the Nation ‘abandoned’ their land

West Vancouver Island’s Ehattesaht First Nation continues lock down after 9 active cases were reported today after a visitor tested positive last week. (Ehattesaht First Nation/Facebook)
Ehattesaht First Nation’s COVID-19 nightmare: nine active cases, a storm and a power outage

The Vancouver Island First Nation in a lockdown since the first case was reported last week

114 Canadians were appointed Nov. 27 to the Order of Canada. (Governor General of Canada photo)
Indigenous actor, author, elder, leaders appointed to Order of Canada

Outstanding achievement, community dedication and service recognized

Most Read