Victoria police were kept busy downtown last weekend with eight people arrested for various offences.
Despite early weekend attempts to engage and inform the community, including young people, by deploying members of various VicPD divisions for a live Tweet-a-long to let people know police would be doing enforcement at popular gathering spots, it appeared many didn’t get the message.
Six of the youth arrests came Friday (May 13) and saw charges recommended of breach of conditions, vandalism, weapons possession and public intoxication.
Three of the six required medical treatment for alcohol and/or drug intoxication and knives, drugs and alcohol were seized. Parents were called to come and get their teens from VicPD cells and informed of the release conditions, which for some included an order to stay away from downtown Victoria.
Saturday night saw two more arrests for vandalism after a business was targeted in the 1200-block of Douglas Street, as well as the seizure of alcohol.
There were no reported injuries during the Friday and Saturday night deployments.
“I’ve not seen in the past young people coming downtown, gathering in groups of sometimes up to 50 or more, consuming alcohol or drugs and then committing this level of violence and vandalism,” VicPD community services division Const. Mark Jenkins said in a release. “It was back-to-back calls from the public during our Friday night deployment.”
VicPD officers are set to be back at key locations again this coming weekend, the release stated.
The department is working with other police departments, school districts and private schools, BC Transit, area municipalities, community groups, parents and families about enforcement actions as it works to find long-term solutions to the ongoing issues with youth.
Anyone who witnesses a group assaulting someone or damaging property is asked to call 911 immediately. To report information about these incidents after the fact, call the VicPD report desk at 250-995-7654 ext. 1.
Do you have a story tip? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.