61-year-old arrested after gun fight near children
A 61-year-old man was shot and arrested after allegedly exchanging gunfire with authorities near the Telus World of Science, police said.
An officer was also injured during the battle by broken glass. Witnesses described numerous VPD members converging in the plaza in front of the science museum before an eruption of gunfire. Lucas De Haro raced to the scene where his wife and two children had been spending the morning inside the building.
“She told me she was about to leave the museum … some seconds afterwards she saw policemen shooting and they said to keep calm and lay on the ground,” he said.
His wife, Cristina Tatu, said via phone there were at least 50 children inside the building at the time.
John McLeod, a mechanic across the street, said he saw officers pull up with guns drawn just after 11 a.m. and heard weapons fire seconds later.
“It seemed to me there was at least five or six initially, then another group (of shots) after that,” McLeod said.
“That’s where we have lunch — right next to the gazebo — right where the cops are shooting from.”
Randall Stradling arrived as an older man he described as “baldish” was being taken away to hospital. Tuesday afternoon it was not known whether the man was the suspect or the officer who was wounded.
Amber Bouchard said she saw as many as 20 officers corral the alleged shooter away from the heavily travelled road outside Science World right before the shots.
“He was more like, I can’t explain it, it was more like he was in a daze,” she said.
“The next thing I saw was them putting him in the ambulance. By then they had him in a white towel.”
Police said the exchange is directly linked to a shooting a few kilometers away in the downtown core minutes before, during which shots were fired outside a Starbucks.
The 52-year-old victim there was taken to hospital in serious condition.