UPDATE: VPD identify suspect in ‘racially motivated’ attack on Asian man with dementia

Vancouver Police are asking for the public’s help in identifying the suspect who assaulted an elderly Asian man with dementia on March 13, 2020 in East Vancouver. Police are investigating the assault as a hate crime. (Vancouver Police Department handout)

Vancouver Police say they have identified the man who they believe assaulted an elderly Asian man with dementia last month in East Vancouver in an attack that appears to have been racially motivated.

After receiving numerous tips from the community, police announced Thursday that they had identified the suspect. Police do not release a suspect’s identity to the public unless, or until, charges are laid.

“Police would like to thank the community and partners for their overwhelming support on such a serious, intolerable incident,” a statement reads.

According to police, the incident happened on March 13 when the victim, who is 92 years old, wandered into a convenience store near Nanaimo Street and East 1st Avenue. Police did not detail the elderly man’s nationality.

As staff at the convenience store were trying to assist him, the suspect began yelling racist remarks at the victim that included comments about COVID-19, according to police. Outside the store, the suspect shoved the elderly man, which caused him to fall to the ground and hit his head.

The suspect left the store before police arrived. The incident is being investigated as a hate crime.

The entire incident was caught on surveillance footage.

“Everything about this assault and the behaviour of the suspect is despicable,” said Const. Tania Visintin. “As a police department, we do not tolerate incidents motivated by bias, prejudice, or hate. It’s even more disturbing considering the victim’s age.”

Visintin told Black Press Media in an email that the elderly man has been recovering at home with family.

Anyone with information is asked to call investigators at 604-717-2763 or to remain anonymous can call Crime Stoppers. Police said the will be using the information to supplement their case, and reach out to specific people if they require more information.

Police said the department has seen an increase in reports of anti-Asian, hate-motivated incidents and criminal behaviour.

In March, 11 hate crimes were reported in Vancouver with five having an anti-Asian element. Four other similar kinds of crimes were reported to police prior to March.

“We know that hate crimes and hate-motivated incidents are generally under reported. We believe the increase in March is indicative of a larger issue,” Visintin said. “We are making a plea to victims or people who witness hate crimes to please come forward and report the incidents to police so they can be investigated.”


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

PoliceVancouver

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

Just Posted

Survey, hotline launched amid probe into racist blood-alcohol guessing game at B.C. hospital

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond has been appointed to lead an investigation by Health Minister Adrian Dix

UPDATE: Terrace conservation officers relocate spirit bear

Bear roamed Kitsumkalum Valley north of Terrace for many years

VIA Rail lays off 1,000 unionized workers across the country

Northern B.C. route Jasper to Prince George to Prince Rupert is not affected by VIA Rail layoffs

Overall house sales drop in the northwest

COVID-19 pandemic slowed market activity

B.C. orders Coastal GasLink to stop pipeline construction near protected wetlands

The 670-kilometre pipeline is planned to transport natural gas from northeast B.C. to Kitimat

Canadian policing organization calls for decriminalization of simple illicit drug possession

Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police want policing focus of opioid crisis to be replaced with a health one

B.C. appeals judge’s decision to leave three clubhouses in Hells Angels hands

The province has filed two notices of appeal related to the B.C. Supreme Court decision

B.C. premier applauds call to decriminalize drug possession

Police shouldn’t struggle with health issues, Horgan says

VIA Rail lays off 1,000 unionized workers across the country

Northern B.C. route Jasper to Prince George to Prince Rupert is not affected by VIA Rail layoffs

Indigenous leader Ed John pleads not guilty to historical sex charges

Ed John’s lawyer entered the plea by telephone on behalf of his client

Woman who talked to unconscious husband for 30 years gets solace from B.C. study

Ian Jordan suffered a head injury when he and another officer were on their way to a call in Victoria in September 1987

RCMP investigate threat against Indigenous totem poles on B.C.’s Sunshine Coast

Police describe the nature of the threat as ‘sensitive’

Ex-Okanagan Mountie forfeits 20 days’ pay after sexual misconduct review

A former Vernon RCMP constable made sexual comments, grabbed genitals of male officer in two incidents 10 years ago

Man found dead on Okanagan trail identified as Hollywood actor

GoFundMe campaign launched for man found dead at summit of Spion Kop

Most Read