Three stabbings in Gastown and Downtown Eastside, and random assault in West End area

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      Investigations are underway into a number of violent incidents that have been taken place in Vancouver in recent weeks.

      A series of three stabbings took place in Gastown and Downtown Eastside over the past day, and an apparently random assault occurred in the area of the West End and Yaletown late last month.

      West End area

      A man was assaulted in what is believed to be a random attack, in an area located between the West End and Yaletown.  

      The Vancouver Police Department (VPD) stated in a news release issued today (October 6) that a 52-year-old man was walking to work near Davie and Howe streets around 5 a.m. on September 18 when a a man, who was walking in the opposite direction, allegedly punched him in the face.

      The victim became disoriented and was unable to stand on his feet.

      “This assault appears to have been completely random and has left the victim with serious injuries to his face,” VPD Const. Tania Visintin stated.

      Visintin explained that the victim took a taxi to a nearby hospital, where he underwent surgery for a fractured jaw.

      “Because the victim was in hospital, the attack was not reported to police until several days later and we were unable to immediately canvass for witnesses or collect evidence from the crime scene,” Visintin stated. However, police believe that there were other people in the area who may have witnessed the assault.

      The suspect is described as being about 178 centimetres (five-feet, 10-inches) tall with a husky build and broad shoulders.

      At the time of the incident, he was wearing a dark hooded sweater, a dark jacket, blue jeans, and a dark mask.

      Investigators are asking any potential witnesses or anyone with any further information about this assault to call the VPD Major Crime Section at 604-717-2541.

      Downtown Eastside and Gastown

      Around 1 p.m. on October 5, police responded to reports about a man who had been stabbed in the back at a social-housing complex near Powell and Dunlevy streets. He sustained life-threatening injuries and was taken to hospital—he is expected to survive.

      Officers tracked the suspect to a room inside the building. After police learned that he had consumed a large amount of fentanyl, they broke down the door and found him unresponsive due to a drug overdose.

      Officers administered naloxone to revive the 27-year-old man and brought him back to consciousness. He was taken to hospital for further treatment and charges are expected.   

      After that, around 1:15 a.m. on October 6, police responded to reports of a man who had been stabbed in the neck, face, and shoulder near East Hastings and Columbia streets.

      The 55-year-old victim was taken to hospital and is in stable condition.

      The suspect remains outstanding and an investigation into the incident remains ongoing.

      In a third incident, which occurred around 2:30 a.m., a man was stabbed in his arm, ribs, and buttocks near Water and Carrall streets in Gastown. He sustained serious injuries and was taken to hospital. No arrests have been made yet and the investigation remains underway.

      Visintin stated that the motives for all three attacks remain unknown, and investigators are still trying to determine if there are any connections between the incidents.

      “As disturbing it is to know that these serious crimes occurred back to back, we do not believe there is any threat to the public at this time,” Visintin added.

      Anyone with information about these incidents is asked to contact the VPD.

      Previously, the VPD had reported that—amid a series of assaults, break-ins, and incidents in Gastown over the weekend—a 42-year-old man was stabbed in several times by a stranger at a social-housing building on Water Street on October 3. Officers later arrested a 33-year-old male suspect and the victim is expected to survive.

      You can follow Craig Takeuchi on Twitter at @cinecraig or on Facebook.