Man robbed at gunpoint in Vancouver; senator warns of recession crime
Vancouver – A rare New York-style robbery in downtown Vancouver has raised questions about whether the recession will fuel street level crime just as a top Canadian senator predicted while asking the feds to hire more cops.
Vancouver police say a man was walking home near the 400-block of Homer Street on Friday night when he was stopped by a couple who asked for a cigarette.
Asking for a smoke turned out to be a ruse, police said.
“The woman asked for a cigarette and her male companion pulled out a gun and demanded money,” said police.
“After a small amount of cash was obtained, the two suspects ran north on the east side of Homer Street and were last seen running through West Hastings Street,” a police statement said.
Police are looking for a man and woman, both white and 20 to 30 years old. The man is approximately six feet tall with a medium build, a shaved head, with dark stubble on his face and he was wearing a black hoodie and dark pants.
The woman, a blonde, was wearing a white jacket with the hood worn up and blue jeans.
While store and bank robberies are common in Vancouver, it is rare for a person to be accosted at gunpoint and asked to hand over cash.
The robbery occurred as Senator Colin Kenny issued a call for more cops to combat recession related crime.
“So Canadians should get ready for more break-ins and robbery of all kinds. They should also expect more of the kind of violence that often goes with this stuff. Convenience stores in all kinds of Canadian communities are already getting whacked – one store in Ottawa has been robbed four times in the last few months,” he wrote in columns published on Thursday.
“Drug addictions breed thievery. Gangs breed thievery. Recessions breed thievery. And right now Canada – like most industrialized countries – is having significant problems with all three of these: drug addiction, gangs and one whopper of a crime-breeding recession,” he said.
“We need more police on the streets, but we also need more police at our airports and seaports, at our border crossings and on the Great Lakes. These are all vulnerable areas that American as well as Canadian security officials are worried about,” said the senator who is head of the Senate Committee on National Security and Defence.
Anyone with any information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.