Suspect fatally shot, officer stabbed at East Vancouver Canadian Tire
Katelyn Verstraten and Kendra Mangione, CTV Vancouver
Published Thursday, November 10, 2016 3:36PM PST
Last Updated Friday, November 11, 2016 12:26PM PST
One man is dead and two people are injured following an alleged robbery at an East Vancouver shopping plaza.
A man entered a Canadian Tire on Bentall Street, near Grandview and Rupert Street on Thursday afternoon, police said. Officers were told there was a robbery in progress.
Witnesses said the suspect was wearing camouflage clothing, and carried pepper spray and a very large rifle. Police said they could not confirm that the man was carrying a gun, but said that he was armed with a knife, and that they believe he was carrying bear spray.
A store employee was stabbed during the attempted robbery, before police arrived at the scene. Police did not say what, if anything, was stolen during the robbery.
Officers confronted the suspect as he fled the store and witnesses said they attempted to Taser the suspect. As they attempted to put handcuffs on the man, he stabbed a Vancouver police officer multiple times, police said.
Police shot the suspect and he died at the scene. Witnesses said the man was shot three or four times, though police have not confirmed the number of shots fired.
The Independent Investigations Office, the province's police watchdog, has been called in to investigate the shooting.
The Canadian Tire employee and the police officer were both rushed to hospital, where they remain in stable condition.
Police have not publicly identified the officer who was injured, but said he had about five years of experience with the VPD.
Sgt. Brian Montague said he is in "good spirits" but suffering from "fairly severe" injuries as a result of the stabbing.
He did not have specifics on the employee or his injuries, other than that the victim is male, and he was stabbed.
Montague said there were unconfirmed reports of a possible second suspect, but that investigators have been unable to confirm whether anyone else was involved.
"We did have many officers enter the store shortly after the shooting looking for additional suspects as well as additional victims and we found none," he said.
"But we will follow up on any information regarding the possibility."
Few details are known about the suspect who died at the scene, other than that it was a male. Police could not provide a name, age, description or any more information.
"That will be determined as the investigation goes on, but it's just too early to say," Montague said.
He said that police have received a lot of information about what happened in the store prior to officers' arrival, and will be reviewing security camera footage as well as witness accounts.
Montague said police will hold off on providing details to the public until witness accounts are confirmed.
The IIO asks potential witnesses to contact investigators at 1-855-446-8477.