Vancouver, BC – A 15-year-old boy has been charged following a series of seemingly random and unprovoked weekend attacks, which were among several violent crimes Vancouver Police were called to investigate during a busy weekend in the city.
“Several serious crimes and large-scale public events kept VPD stretched thin throughout the weekend,” says Sergeant Steve Addison. “Our officers responded to multiple stabbings and unprovoked attacks, investigated the year’s third homicide, dealt with a bomb scare, and provided extensive traffic support along the 42-kilometre BMO Vancouver Marathon route.”
The 15-year-old East Vancouver teen was arrested Saturday night, after three people were attacked without provocation on the seawall, near the Olympic Village. A 57-year-old victim called police around 9:15 p.m. after he was chased along the seawall by a teen, who repeatedly punched and kicked him. While searching for the suspect, officers located two additional victims – both women – who had also been punched for no reason.
Based on evidence collected at the crime scenes, police identified and arrested the teen, who was still in the area. He was taken to jail, charged with three counts of assault, and has since been released.
That incident was one of several serious weekend crimes now under investigation by VPD. Other incidents of note:
A 31-year-old woman was walking on Drake Street Sunday afternoon when a man she did not know threw a rock towards her. The rock missed, but struck and damaged a nearby vehicle. The victim ran away and called 9-1-1. VPD officers identified a 45-year-old man, who was arrested close by. He was taken to jail for assault with a weapon and mischief.
A woman was walking near West Pender and Homer Street just before 1 a.m. Monday when she was robbed and assaulted by a woman holding a broken bottle. The victim, 31, watched the suspect enter a nearby convenience store and quickly called 9-1-1. VPD officers responded immediately and arrested the suspect for robbery and assault with a weapon. The suspect was taken to jail. The victim suffered facial injuries.
A man was leaving a 24-hour coffee shop near Station Street and Terminal Avenue on April 29 when he was followed and kicked by a stranger. The victim called 9-1-1 and VPD located the suspect inside the coffee shop. The victim was uninjured. The suspect, a 43-year-old man, was apprehended under the Mental Health Act and taken to hospital.
A man was stabbed in the abdomen while walking in the north lane of East Hastings Street, in the Downtown Eastside, on April 29. The victim, 29, ran away and told a witness, who called 9-1-1. The victim, whose injuries are not life threatening, is so far uncooperative with the police investigation.
A teenager was with friends at Leeside Skatepark, near Empire Field, when a stranger assaulted him with bear spray and stole his skateboard Saturday afternoon. The teen was not seriously injured. The victim and suspect did not know each other. VPD is investigating, and no arrests have been made.
A 38-year-old man was shocked in the leg with a makeshift stun-gun near Main and Hastings Sunday afternoon. The suspect, a 47-year-old woman who lives in the area, fled with an accomplice before police arrived. The investigation is ongoing.
VPD was called to a social housing building in Strathcona on Saturday night, after a 33-year-old man was stabbed in the arm by a neighbour during a physical fight. The victim was taken to hospital for stitches and the suspect was taken to jail, but released without charges. Two days later, VPD again responded after the two men started fighting. In that case, the suspect in the original incident suffered knife wounds and the original victim was arrested for assault with a weapon and taken to jail.
“This level of violence in a single weekend is concerning, especially when the incidents involve stranger-on-stranger attacks and weapons like knives, bear spray, and other make-shift weapons,” says Sergeant Addison, adding that violent crime in Vancouver increased 7.1 per cent in 2021 compared to pre-pandemic levels.
“In each of these cases, police were able to identify and arrest suspects, or secure valuable evidence, because people quickly called 9-1-1.”
VPD encourages anyone who is the victim of violent crime, or has information about a crime in progress, to call 9-1-1 immediately. Less serious crimes, including those where there is no suspect on scene and no immediate safety risk, should call the ECOMM non-emergency line at 604-717-3321.
Vancouver Police Department
Vancouver Police investigate Mount Pleasant homicide
2 May 2022
Vancouver – Vancouver Police are investigating the city’s third homicide of 2022, after officers discovered a 51-year-old woman dead inside a Mount Pleasant apartment Sunday morning.
VPD responded to reports of a disturbance inside a building near Ontario Street and First Avenue around 2:30 a.m. on May 1. When officers arrived, they found the victim suffering from fatal stab wounds. She died on scene.
A 51-year-old man has been arrested, and investigators believe the suspect and victim knew each other.
The investigation is ongoing. Charges have not yet been laid.
Vancouver Police investigate suspicious device on marathon route
1 May 2022
Vancouver – Vancouver Police explosives experts rendered inert a suspicious device near Science World on Sunday, delaying the start of the BMO Vancouver Marathon.
“This is extremely concerning, and it appears the device was strategically placed along the half marathon route, where runners would be passing close by,” says Sergeant Steve Addison. “Whoever did this was likely aiming to cause panic or to disrupt the event.”
A marathon volunteer spotted the device shortly after 5 a.m. Sunday and promptly called 9-1-1. Vancouver Police cordoned off the area, and bomb technicians from VPD’s Emergency Response Team were deployed to examine and destroy the device.
The Emergency Response Team determined the device was not at risk of exploding and did not pose an immediate danger to the public, however the race start had to be delayed while the device was rendered inert.
Investigators from VPD’s Major Crime Section, Forensic Identification Unit, and Operations Division are now collecting additional evidence. No arrests have been made.
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