VANCOUVER Police said on Monday that they responded to over 800 calls for service during a 24-hour time period over the Halloween weekend. A new call for service was generated every one minute and 11 seconds between 7 p.m. on October 31 and 5 a.m. November 1. Typically, a new police call is generated every two minutes and 16 seconds.
VPD responded to several, serious criminal incidents during this time. Four victims were taken to hospital with various injuries.
* Just after midnight on November 1, an unoccupied purple Porsche Panamera caught on fire near Turner and Lillooet streets. VPD and Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services deemed the vehicle fire was likely an arson. No one was injured and no other property damage was reported. This file is being investigated by the VPD’s Major Crime Section.
* Minutes later, reports came in regarding an altercation between two groups at Empire Field near Hastings and Cassiar streets. One male victim was stabbed and was taken to hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. No suspects have been arrested and the file is under investigation.
A number of serious incidents occurred between 5:15 and 6:15 a.m. on the Downtown Eastside early Sunday morning.
* At 5:48 a.m., a woman in her 50s reported being struck over the head with a blunt object near East Hastings and Columbia streets. She was taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The assault is under investigation.
* Three minutes later, officers were called to East Hastings and Carrall streets where a man in his late 30s was suffering from stab wounds. He was rushed to hospital in critical condition. The stabbing is under investigation.
* While dealing with the latest victim at Carrall and East Hastings, a man in his late 20s approached officers at 6:12 a.m. with stab wounds. He was also taken to hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. The stabbing is under investigation.
On Halloween night, officers responded to a large crowd gathered on the Granville strip. The number of people along Granville Street grew larger than expected during a pandemic, so additional resources were brought in from around the city to assist in creating a safer environment for the public and officers.
- Based on the hostile demeanour and size of Saturday’s crowd, social distancing tickets were not issued to party goers on the Granville strip as it would not have been a safe or an efficient use of the available police resources at the time. Police must consider officer and public safety when deciding on possible enforcement options.
- Officers noticed a white Range Rover driving along Granville Street with the passengers out of their seats, sitting on the sides of the windows. When officers conducted a vehicle stop, the passengers got out of the vehicle and swarmed the members. Officers requested additional cover officers as the group increased to 30 people and they were becoming increasingly belligerent towards police.
- As officers were responding to the swarming, one man jumped on the hood of a police vehicle in an attempt to provoke the crowd. This man was arrested for breach of the peace and was taken to jail. Another police vehicle had its right rear passenger side window smashed. No one has been arrested in this incident.