Vancouver police say woman deliberately burned Monday in attack

A Vancouver Police Department patch is seen on an officer's uniform in Vancouver, on January 9, 2021. Police say a woman has serious burns after a man poured something on her and set the liquid on fire at about 1:30 a.m., Monday, in the Downtown Eastside.

VANCOUVER — Police in Vancouver say a woman they describe as “vulnerable” has serious burns after a man poured a flammable liquid on her and set it on fire.

A statement from police says it happened at about 1:30 a.m. Monday.

The statement says the woman, who’s in her 50s, was sitting on a sidewalk in the Downtown Eastside neighbourhood when a man in his 30s approached, poured the liquid on her head and lit it.

Const. Tania Visintin says the man fled and the woman ran to a nearby business to get help.

Police are also investigating a second incident at about the same time as the woman was attacked, where a man’s homemade sleeping structure was set ablaze.

Police say a man reports he was sleeping in an alley not far from the first fire when someone set the structure on fire, but the man was able to put out the flames himself and was not hurt.

Visintin says both cases are being investigated as arson, but police don’t believe there’s a link.

“However, it is still very early in the investigation, so we are not ruling anything out,” Visintin says in the release.

The attack on the woman was shocking, says Visintin, because it targeted a “vulnerable member” of the community.

Anyone with information about either arson is asked to speak with the department’s major crime unit.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 27, 2022.

The Canadian PressThe Canadian Press

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