Man bear-sprayed and robbed in Nanaimo park

NANAIMO - Victim bear-sprayed and pack sacks stolen in Bowen Park.

A man was bear-sprayed and robbed in Bowen Park Thursday.

The robbery happened at about 8 p.m. near the picnic shelter in the park. The 46-year-old victim was relaxing on a park bench when he was approached by what police describe as a group of male and female young adults.

One of the group made small talk with the victim until, without warning, he was hit in the face with bear spray. One of the youths grabbed both his back packs and they group ran off toward Howard Avenue.

Police and a police dog responded and managed to find one of the pack sacks behind Auto Check Automotive at Bowen Road and Howard Avenue.

The bag that was not found is black with colourful stars and contained the victims clothing and other personal effects.

The victim was unable to provide describe the suspects other than the one who bear-sprayed him who was a white male, in his early 20s with light coloured short hair.

Anyone with information, please call the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477, text 274637, keyword Nanaimo or submit a tip online at www.nanaimocrimestoppers.com.