Police in Vancouver, Canada are asking for the public’s help in tracking down a man who attacked a senior in Chinatown with a bear spray.
The Vancouver Sun reports the unprovoked assault on the 87-year-old man may be racially motivated.
“Every indication is that this incident was completely unprovoked and may have been fuelled by anti-Asian hate,” said Const. Tania Visintin, a spokeswoman for the Vancouver police.
CBC reports that investigators accuse the suspect of making racial slurs and attacking the man during his morning walk Friday morning. Visintin described the victim as traumatized but not seriously injured.
Police are also investigating whether the incident may be connected to the spraying of offensive graffiti on the nearby Sun Yat-Sen memorial. Someone scrawled the word “shhhh” across the statue, considered by some a response to the increased outspokenness of the community to anti-Asian attacks.
“People who live and work in Chinatown deserve to feel safe, valued, and respected,” adds Constable Visintin. “Violent and unprovoked attacks, rampant graffiti, and street disorder are appalling, and these incidents continue to erode peoples’ sense of safety.”
Police are looking for a man 30-40-years old who is about 6 feet tall. He was wearing a black jacket, dark-coloured pants, a grey baseball cap, grey shoes with red trim and white soles and was carrying a black backpack.
Anyone who has information or anyone who recognizes the suspect is asked to call investigators at 604-717-4034.
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