An individual believed to have been high on methamphetamine used a firefighter's axe to threaten two WFPS responders.

Firefighters with the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service (WFPS) were responding to a medical incident in the 200 block of Aberdeen Avenue on May 5, 2019, when a male stole a WFPS axe from their vehicle.

Two firefighters were then confronted by the individual with the axe in a threatening manner as they were walking back to their vehicle.

The incident occurred around 11:55 p.m. Both firefighters tried to flee, and the male used the axe to attack a WFPS laptop before dropping the weapon and leaving the scene.

"I think this is just another reminder of the safety risks involved with first responders in today's day and age with the rising methamphetamine crisis,"  said Jay Murray, Winnipeg Police Service Public Information Officer.

The suspect was located chasing an individual by the North District General Patrol units and the K9 Unit. The suspect was in the area of Aikens Street and Burrows Avenue. A brief chase on-foot ensued, and the suspect was eventually taken into custody around the Charles Street and Mangus Avenue area.

It is believed that methamphetamine played a role in the incident, police say.

Ihor Holowczynsky, WFPS Assistant Chief, says that anecdotally, it seems that WFPS seem to be dealing with a greater number of violent attacks as a result of methamphetamine usage in the city.

The 33-year-old suspect has since been detained in custody.