Monday, April 19, 2010

A troubled soul in the down town core

"It's a shame. There's cops sitting there watching him. They didn't turn the siren' on until it happened." -- a local business owner expressing frustration as a result of a morning incident in the downtown area. 

Thursday's edition of the Daily News provided some eyewitness accounts of a distraught man behaving in a strange manner and eventually causing a fair bit of property damage at a downtown exercise centre.

 Prince Rupert RCMP received a number of calls in the early business hours of Thursday, with workers and passers by in the downtown area asking them to attend to the disturbance which featured a man seemingly in some distress acting in an unusual manner, kicking buildings, attempting to break windows and in the end eventually succeeding, much to the disappointment of the owners of The Gym at the corner of Fulton and Third Avenue West.

The distraught individual was eventually coralled by police and taken to Prince Rupert Regional Hospital for further evaluation, Thursday's Daily News provided an untitled article on page three which recounted the trail trouble on the downtown streets of Prince Rupert.

George T. Baker and Monica Lamb-Yorski 
Daily News 
Thursday, April 15, 2010 

 A man who, according to RCMP, suffers from schizophrenia went on a rampage, smashing storefront windows on Third Ave. West yesterday morning.

Police have arrested what they term a "younger male." The man was taken to Prince Rupert Regional Hospital for evaluation.

"He has been charged with mischief and is at PRRH for assessments," reported Cst. Erin Stevenson, Crime Prevention Officer for the Prince Rupert RCMP.

It is still undetermined whether there were multiple males involved because, according to Stevenson, police received complaint calls describing separate men. For now, only one man has been charged.

For business owners along Third Ave. the sight of a grown man breaking windows in front of customers in broad daylight was both shocking and infuriating.

"We're going to charge him for restitution if we can because you're allowed to do that if somebody is doing that and the police caught him here on the street,” said Linda Lutz, owner of private fitness business The Gym.

However, Lutz was already resigned to the fact that she was at least going to have to pay for the initial costs to repair her window.

Lutz's deductible is $1,000, but she expected the window to cost more than that, meaning, for now.

"There'll be another sheet of plywood going up on Third Avenue because of the cost."

 Did Lutz believe she might actually be able to get restitution for her window? Not really.

 "It might be like getting blood out of a stone”, reasoned Lutz.

 "It's a shame. There's cops sitting there watching him. They didn't turn the siren' on until it happened."

Charmaine Gibson was working at The Gym when the man came up and smashed the window. When asked for her version of what happened, she replied.

"The usual suspects. A guy having a fight internally with himself breaks storefront window," recounted Gibson.

"I was on the phone, talking to Joe Gabor (The Gym co-owner and owner of King Koin Laundromat) and saw the whole thing."

According to Gibson, the disturbed man was walking along and bumped into The Gym business sign outside. He became angry picked up the sign and smashed the window.

 "I told Joe to phone the police right away,” said Gibson.

Another witness recounted the whole bizarre behaviour pattern exhibited by the man. "He was on the street crying and going down the street hitting things.

He tried to kick a car in. I was walking up the street and I saw him kick in the old audiovisual place. "He tried kicking in the drugstore, but he didn't break anything. He was swearing. Something's bothering this [poor fellow]."

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