Tourists viciously beaten on Valentine's date in Vancouver
Published Monday, February 15, 2016 5:46PM PST
Last Updated Monday, February 15, 2016 7:12PM PST
Kristal March and Cory Harasivich knew they’d be spending Valentine’s Day together, but never expected it would be in a Vancouver hospital.
The Kelowna, B.C. couple drove into the city Friday, booked a night in a downtown hotel and headed out to celebrate the romantic holiday early.
March has two young children, ages three and seven, and planned to return home to them on Saturday – but that had to be put on hold after the couple suffered a brutal attack by a group of total strangers.
“It honestly happened so fast. I was holding Cory’s hand and all of a sudden he was getting ripped away from me,” March said.
The couple said the attack started while they were walking back to the hotel around 10:30 p.m. As they were crossing the street at Georgia and Hamilton, a car drifted into the intersection and struck March.
“It wasn’t super-fast, but bumped me in the thigh… and I stumbled into Cory,” she said.
Harasivich yelled and hit the vehicle, but the couple said they then continued on their way – only to have the driver park and come after them with two friends moments later.
“Two of them jumped on Cory and were punching him and took him to the ground, and the third one came and kicked me – like a big soccer kick right to the ankle.”
That broke three bones and left her ankle fully dislocated, March said Monday from St. Paul’s Hospital, where she remained in a wheelchair and cast.
“My foot was totally hanging off the wrong side and backwards, with my shin bone sticking out.”
The attackers fled after bystanders started yelling at them, and Harasivich wasn’t as seriously hurt – suffering a black eye and broken lip.
But March is facing months of recovery, and she’s concerned about how she’ll be able to take care of her kids.
“That’s going to make my life pretty challenging, not being able to walk for two months,” she said.
“Kinda threw our whole world upside-down real quick.”
The couple said they decided to speak out in the hopes that someone might have seen what happened and snapped a picture of the vehicle as the group was fleeing.
One witness who stayed at the scene managed to get part of the licence plate, but it hasn’t helped track down the vehicle so far. Vancouver police told CTV News they’re still looking for suspects.
March and Harasivich describe the vehicle involved as a dark-coloured SUV, and the attackers as men who might be in their 30s.
They have also put up a GoFundMe page to help with their expenses while March recovers. To donate, click here.
With a report from CTV Vancouver’s Scott Hurst