VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Vancouver Police are ringing the alarm after a shooting near Oppenheimer Park has raised concerns about the safety of the area.
A man is expected to be okay after a shooting Wednesday night when police officers found the wounded 31-year-old near the park at around 10:30 pm.
Police officers who were patrolling in the area heard the shots and found the man, who was rushed to hospital in stable condition.
Sergeant Jason Robillard says it’s just the latest incident in the area, following an increase in calls for help.
“There has been a sharp increase in the level of violence in and around the encampment at Oppenheimer Park in recent months,” Robillard says. “Police are responding to several 911 calls in the park every day and we are very concerned about the safety of the people staying there, our officers, firefighters, and City of Vancouver staff.”
There has been a jump in 911 calls to the area, in June alone 92 emergency calls were made for police response in the park, and in May there were 87 calls. It’s a noticeable increase from 2018 when there were 56 calls for service in June and 56 in May.
Robillard says some of these calls have been violent adding an officer has been hurt while attempting to keep Oppenheimer Park safe.
“We want people in the park to be safe and currently, the environment there is not safe, even for our officers,” he says. “On Wednesday, a police officer was assaulted as she tried to assist City crews working to keep the park clean.”
It’s believed the suspect in the shooting ran away through the park, and so far no arrests have been made.