A sexual assault in Vancouver’s Gastown over the weekend has prompted some members of the community to form a neighboourhood group to help each other out.
Police confirmed Monday there is an active investigation into a sexual assault that happened at 9 a.m. on Saturday in a lane near Main and Powell streets.
Police said no one has been arrested in the case and it is unclear at this time if it is linked to any other incidents.
But some residents are now taking action and forming a community block watch group they are calling the Gastown Guardians.
“The idea with Gastown Guardians is basically to be looking at what people in the neighbourhood are already doing this job,” resident Graham Williams told Global News.
“I’m hearing a lot. People talk about community policing and the VPD are there for (emergencies), but (the group is for) a situation like this where your neighbour needs a hand.”
VPD ask for public help to identify sex assault suspect
Williams said for those in the neighbourhood who may not always feel safe, that is when the group can step up and help, either by travelling in small groups or walking dogs together.
Vancouver police said in regards to Saturday’s sex assault, the suspect appears to be an Indigenous man in his 30s, about five-foot-six-inches tall, with a medium to heavy build, black hair, and a goatee.
Police said he was wearing a purple and grey baseball hat, a black hoodie and dark jeans.
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