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Vancouver police investigate three violent stranger attacks in Fairview neighbourhood

Police look for connection after residents tackled, punched and stabbed in separate incidents
A Vancouver Police Department patch is seen on an officer’s uniform in Vancouver, on Jan. 9, 2021. Vancouver Police say they are investigating a series of violent stranger attacks in the city’s Fairview neighbourhood and are trying to establish if they are related. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Vancouver police are investigating what they call a series of violent stranger assaults in the city’s Fairview neighbourhood and trying to establish if the incidents are related.

Constable Tania Visintin says all three alleged assaults involving an unknown male attacker or attackers occurred within a span of about two hours Thursday evening, and anyone with information should call police.

Investigators say the first attack happened just after 6:30 p.m. near the sea wall under the Cambie Street Bridge, when a 70-year-old man was approached from behind, tackled to the ground, and punched and kicked several times.

A 33-year-old woman walking her dog near West 11th Avenue and Spruce Street was approached from behind and punched in the face about 45 minutes later.

Police say the third attack happened just before 8:45 p.m., when a 23-year-old woman was stabbed as she walked near West Broadway and Alder Street, inflicting a serious but non-life-threatening injury.

Anyone who witnessed the incidents or has any information is asked to call the Vancouver Police Department’s major crime section at 604-717-2541.

The man allegedly involved in the stabbing was last seen heading south on Alder Street.

“Incidents like these leave victims with physical and emotional scars, but they also cause fear and anxiety throughout the community,” Visintin says.

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