Vancouver police today are appealing to a thief to return Indigenous items belonging to a B.C. First Nation that were stolen earlier this month from a vehicle in downtown Vancouver.
On January 15, someone broke into a van in a parking lot near Richards and West Pender streets and stole two suitcases containing traditional boots, nine items of ceremonial regalia, and five drums.
The suspect—described as male with a medium build and wearing a dark, camouflaged hoodie under a puffy vest with dark pants—departed the scene of his crime on an eastbound bus on West Hastings Street.
In a news release today (January 28), VPD Sgt. Aaron Roed called for anyone with knowledge of the theft to assist: “The true value of this ceremonial clothing and drums is not monetary—it’s priceless in terms of the cultural significance to the people of the Lake Babine Nation. Our investigators have been working diligently on this case but have been unable to locate the items. We believe that someone knows where these items are. We just want them returned.”
“Since the theft, two items have been turned in to the Carnegie Centre. The remaining items can be dropped off in any public place like a community centre or our community policing centres, so they can be returned to the Lake Babine Nation."
The Lake Babine Nation is B.C.'s third-largest Indigenous band and is located west of Prince George.
Police are asking the thief or anyone who knows of the crime to call Crime Stoppers anonymously (1-800-222-8477) or to call the non-emergency police number (604-717-3321).