West Vancouver’s chief of police has a stern message for local youth after Canada Day celebrations at Ambleside Beach turned into a drunken, violent mess.
Police say upwards of 300 teens, many underage and intoxicated, had gathered near the skate park. Officers on foot patrol approached the group around 8:50 p.m. and matters escalated, according to a release from the department.
“A struggle ensued after the person is alleged to have charged at one of the officers. The rest of the group quickly surrounded the officers and began chanting and swearing obscenities, while many filmed the interaction,” the release from Const. Kevin Goodmurphy stated. “Two officers were assaulted during the incident with one officer sustaining injuries after being punched in the face.”
More officers arrived to help move the crowd towards the beach area, where more fights broke out amongst the group. Eventually police closed down the park, causing traffic backups and preventing other families from enjoying the beach, the release continued. It took more than three hours to disperse the group.
Two teens were arrested and released. No charges have been sworn yet but the assaults remain under investigation.
West Vancouver Police Chief Len Goerke is now speaking out against the behaviour.
“This type of violent behaviour cannot and will not be tolerated in West Vancouver,” he stated in the release. “Foot patrols throughout our parks and beaches will be ongoing over the summer months and enforcement action will be taken where officers find individuals contravening the Liquor Control and Licensing Act, or disrupting the peace and lawful use and enjoyment of public space by drunkenness, violence, or threats of violence.”