From The Vancouver Sun – November 16, 2011
VANCOUVER – The Vancouver police department is blitzing the Lower Mainland with 35,000 posters featuring pictures of 104 suspects from the Stanley Cup riot whom police have yet to identify.
Police Chief Jim Chu did not disclose the cost of the poster campaign, but said in a written news release Wednesday that the Vancouver Police Foundation provided funding.
“In the history of the VPD, we have never done what we are doing today,” Chu said in the release. “A team of 150 volunteers is blanketing our region. They are standing outside of colleges, shopping malls and … the stores that were the victims that night.
“If all goes well we hope that more than 100,000 people will eventually see this poster either in person or online.”
Sgt. Howard Chow with the Integrated Riot Investigation Team issued an update late Wednesday afternoon saying, ” The 35,000 posters our army of volunteers have been handing out have already had a major impact. We’ve been receiving tips all afternoon regarding the photos in the poster.”
So far police have recommended 163 charges against 60 people allegedly involved in rioting and vandalism, but estimate as many as 700 people will likely face charges by the time the investigation is concluded.
The riot in downtown Vancouver that followed the Vancouver Canucks’ loss in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final on June 15 resulted in millions of dollars worth of damage.
Chief Constable Jim Chu’s statement Wednesday:
What happened on June 15th was extraordinary.
It calls for extraordinary measures.
In the history of the VPD we have never done what we are doing today.
As we speak, a team of 150 volunteers are blanketing our region.
They are standing outside of colleges, shopping malls and, like our location here, the stores that were the victims that night.
They are handing out this, a brochure that unfolds into a poster containing the pictures of 104 suspected rioters.
In a one day blitz of the city we will put this poster into the hands of more than 35,000 people.
We hope that in many cases they will share the poster with others or even post it in a high traffic area.
If all goes well we hope that more than 100,000 people will eventually see this poster either in person or online.
We need as many people as possible to help us identify the rioters in these pictures.
We understand that for many residents it seems like the riot was a long time ago, but for the members of the VPD and the victims of that night, it might as well have been yesterday.
Some of our critics have said why bother.
We bother because we care.
We care about what happened to the victims.
We care about what happened to the reputation of our city.
And we care that as many rioters as possible will be held accountable for what they did that night.
We believe the members of our community care as well and will help us identify those responsible.
I would like to thank the Vancouver Police Foundation for providing funding to cover the costs of these posters.
© Copyright The Vancouver Sun