VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Vancouver Police were very active on New Year’s eve, responding to over a dozen calls, including to a restaurant that was caught hosting a large private party despite COVID restrictions.
Constable Tania Visintin says officers responded to 34 calls on Dec. 31 related to the Gathering and Events order from the Provincial Health Officer.
“We issued four tickets for the $2,300 fine for people hosting large parties, so there were a few parties going on, especially in the downtown core. And so our offices were definitely kept busy,” she says.
Around 11 p.m., officers visited a restaurant near Granville and Davie streets that where they found about 100 people attending a closed-door party.
Alcohol was being served along with food despite a public health order requiring restaurants, pubs and stores to cut off liquor sales and service by 8 p.m. on New Year’s Eve.
“The owner/organizer was issued a violation ticket for $2,300 and the party was shut down by police,” a release from the VPD reads.
Among the notable New Year’s Eve incidents, around 11:30 p.m. a police officer was bitten by a protester as she was being removed from a statue during a demonstration at the Vancouver Art Gallery.
“She was then arrested for assaulting a police officer and taken to jail,” Visintin tells NEWS 1130.
The officer suffered non-life-threatening injures.
Earlier in the night at around 6 p.m. a person was cut in the face at Granville and Helmcken in the early part of the evening.
“A suspect walked up to a person that he did not know, took a machete and slashed him in the face. Totally uncalled for, totally out of the blue,” she explains.
The victim was treated for non-life-threatening injuries, and the suspect is now in custody.
An hour later, around 7 p.m., officers responded to a report of a weapon call near Granville and Davie streets.
“The suspect walked up to a man not known to him, put a metal object to the victim’s neck and said ‘you are my enemy.'”
The victim was able to find a safe place and call police.
The suspect was not located, and the incident is still under investigation.
Despite the busy night, Visintin says a positive outcome of the night was officers didn’t see large gatherings like the city saw on Halloween.