Vancouver police are expressing concerns about a “disturbing” attack on a homeless man in the Downtown Eastside.
According to the Vancouver Police Department (VPD), a 22-year-old man was standing in front of the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre at Columbia Street and East Cordova on the evening of September 23 when he felt a sharp pain in his leg.
He then discovered that he had been shot by an arrow that had lodged in his leg just below his kneecap.
The victim managed to walk a block to Insite where staff gave first aid and called 911.
After arriving at the location, officers discovered a cache of real and imitation weapons at a building on East Hastings Street. Among the items were crossbows, replica assault rifles, scopes, lights, and lasers.
Investigators believe that the arrow was shot from the fire escape of the building, and that the person who shot the arrow fled before police arrived at the scene.
“This level of callousness and disregard is shocking,” VPD spokesperson Sgt. Steve Addison stated in a news release. “All signs point to this being a random attack, and we’re incredibly concerned because the victim was already one of our community’s most vulnerable.”
This incident follows a previous attack on a homeless man that took place in Yaletown on July 26. The VPD had released a video that depicted a male suspect chasing after a homeless man, pushing him to the ground, and repeatedly kicking him.
No arrests have been made yet for that case, which remains under investigation.
“We know that homeless and unsheltered people are already more likely to be victims of crime than those who are housed,” Addison stated. “We are doing everything possible to identify the people who did this and hold them accountable.”More