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Police investigating several 'seemingly random' violent incidents in Vancouver

Police say at least five violent attacks, including three stabbings, involved strangers this weekend.
Vancouver police are looking for a man after he allegedly chased two women at night.

Police are investigating several attacks they call random and violent.

At least three people were stabbed in three seemingly unrelated incidents this weekend, according to police, in a series of attacks involving strangers.

Early Saturday morning, June 18, a 27-year-old man was attacked unprovoked by a group of teens near Drake and Seymour Streets.

Around 3:30 a.m. the man was stabbed and bear sprayed by a group of six to eight young people, he reported to police. The victim was able to find his way to a hospital and received treatment for his non-life-threatening injuries.

Later the same morning a woman on a West End bus noticed another woman glaring at her. The victim moved seats, but the suspect followed. When the victim got off the bus, around 6:15 a.m. near the intersection of West Pender and Hornby streets, the suspect got off as well.

She then slapped the victim in the face "for no apparent reason" according to police, and fled.

On Sunday, June 19, around 6 a.m. a bystander called in an incident when they saw someone pull what appeared to be a pistol on a man walking near English Bay.

"VPD officers responded and arrested the suspect for pointing a firearm," say police. "He was found in possession of an airsoft gun with two loaded magazines. Police believe the suspect had been partying overnight at the beach when he got into a confrontation with a stranger."

In another case, two people were attacked with a machete while they were loading luggage into a waiting taxi near the Empress Hotel at Main and Hastings Sunday evening. A VPD officer was waved down and told there was a man wielding a weapon; when he got to the victims he found the pair had wounds on their faces and necks.

They're both expected to recover, but had to go to the hospital for treatment, police note.

"The victims told police they did not know the attacker – a heavy-set man in his forties who was wearing a grey t-shirt, a blue raincoat, and carrying an umbrella. He was last seen running south from the crime scene and has not been identified," state the police in a press release.

Later Sunday evening, around 11:30 p.m. a 23-year-old man was leaving the Diljit Dosanjh concert at Rogers Arena when he was confronted by a group of strangers and stabbed, according to police.

"The victim was taken to hospital and is expected to survive. The suspects fled and have not been located," notes the police. "VPD investigators are working to determine what led to the confrontation and to identify the people involved.

Police note that with the warm weather and lifting of COVID-19 restrictions incidents of conflict may be on the rise.

"Vancouver Police expect to see a surge of people coming to the city to enjoy our beaches, parks, shopping, and entertainment,” says Sgt. Steve Addison."More people always bring more calls for police service and the potential for increased conflicts."

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