Frank Pacella charged in August 21 assault against Vancouver Police officers

CRIMINAL charges have been laid against a Vancouver man accused of assaulting two Vancouver Police Department officers last week.

Frank Pacella, 50, has been charged with one count each of assaulting a police officer, assaulting a police officer causing bodily harm, resisting arrest, and escaping lawful custody. The charges relate to an August 21 incident near Sunset Beach that sent two VPD officers to hospital with injuries.

Police were called to the area of Pacific and Thurlow streets around 5 p.m. on August 21 by witnesses who saw a man yelling and behaving erratically. The officers were assaulted as they attempted to take the man into custody.

Witnesses first called police to report a man who was yelling and appeared to be hallucinating approximately a block west of the Vancouver Aquatic Centre. Two officers, a constable with VPD since 2017 and a sergeant with VPD since 2004, located the man and tried to take him into custody. That’s when they were assaulted.

The constable suffered multiple scratches to her face and head, as well as an injured arm during the assault, in which the suspect also attempted to take her firearm out of its holster.

The sergeant sustained cuts and scratches to her face, hand and body after being bitten on the finger.

A bystander who witnessed the incident intervened to help the injured officers, but the suspect fled. He was arrested by additional police officers following a brief foot pursuit, and after a taser was deployed.

The injured VPD officers were treated in hospital and released.

The suspect was also taken to hospital and assessed for injuries before being transported to jail.