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Bear mace used in downtown New West robbery

NWPD seeking witnesses who may have seen suspect
Bear mace NWPD
New Westminster are seeking witnesses who may help identify a suspect who allegedly robbed a store on Carnarvon Street.

The New Westminster Police Department is seeking witnesses to an alleged robbery in downtown New West involving bear mace.

Police were called to a store in the 800 block of the Carnarvon Street about 10:15 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 16, after a suspect allegedly doused a staff member with bear mace while he robbed the store. Police searched the area for anyone matching the suspect description, but could not locate a suspect.

According to a NWPD press release, police believe there may have been witnesses who saw this suspect flee, and have yet to speak to investigators. The suspect is described as a Caucasian man between 30 and 50 years of age, standing approximately 5’6” tall, wearing a dark grey jacket with a black vest, and carrying a blue bag.

“This is the second time within four months that staff at this store have been assaulted during a robbery,” said NWPD spokesperson Sgt. Sanjay Kumar in a press release. “Four months ago we were successful in identifying and arresting a suspect; now we’re asking for help in bringing this second person before the courts.”

Anyone with information about the armed robbery is asked to contact the New Westminster Police Department at 604-525-5411.

On Aug. 29, NWPD officers were called to a robbery in progress at the Dollar Tree at the Shops at New West station, where a suspect had gathered up items of little value, such as drinks, chips and candies, and exited the store. An employee followed him and confronted the suspect just outside the store, at which time the clerk was allegedly punched in the face.

Upon their arrival, witnesses directed police officers to a bank vestibule, where the suspect was located by police. At the time of that incident, the NWPD stated the suspect threatened the officers, made racist comments towards them and refused to comply with police direction, so members had to use OC pepper spray to safely arrest him.

“The way the interaction was going it likely could have led to more of a hands-on physical interaction,” Kumar said at the time. “Our members tried to avoid this by applying OC spray, which allowed them to safely take him into custody.”