Some social media users in Chilliwack were expressing shock this week over a video posted to Facebook showing a man lighting a brick of fireworks next to a homeless person’s mobile encampment in a church parking lot.
The video was posted a public group on April 21 and is filmed by one person showing another holding a large firework branded as “The Two Four.”
The person walks from Mary Street along the sidewalk, into the parking lot between St. Mary’s Church and St. Mary’s elementary school.
He then walks to the back of the parking lot where a homeless individual’s large mobile encampment was parked next to a set of wooden stairs. The man, wearing a hoodie, baseball cap with his face covered, bends down, lights the fireworks and runs away towards the person filming, and both run to a car.
The subsequent explosions can be seeing going off just inches from the cart.
The female and male can be heard laughing, one of them saying: “That was amazing.”
It is unclear what date the video was recorded, but several people on social media suggested it was definitely this week.
Chilliwack RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Mike Rail said police did not have any reports connected to this incident in recent days.
The owner of a local security company familiar with most of the people on the streets told The Progress that the individual who lives in this structure, which is on wheels, probably wasn’t in the cart at the time.
The video does not show anyone exiting the structure before or after the fireworks were set off.
“(The homeless guy is) a fighter and there should have been a chase if he was there,” the company owner said. “The kid is lucky he didn’t get hurt.”
The person who posted the video on a public Facebook page received scathing criticism as most commenters assumed he was the one in the video. But The Progress reached out to the man who said it wasn’t him in the video, but that he “just wanted to show what happened.”
The specific brand of fireworks lit next to the homeless person’s cart is described by the manufacturer as “24 crackling tails bursting into crackling willows and red, green, and blue flowers.”
Product warnings say the effect has a height of 35 metres, and suggests spectators should be at a minimum distance of 70 metres away.
”Choose a wide clear site away from all obstacles. Safety glasses, hearing protection, gloves and snug cotton attire recommended for safe ignition.”
This wouldn’t be the first incident of people tossing fireworks at homeless people. In 2018, Chilliwack RCMP investigated a similar cruel prank.
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