Victoria police are hoping to track down a potential witness of a devastating arson at the home of a Victoria pastor early Wednesday.
Around 1 a.m. the home of Father Yuriy Vyshnevskyy, his wife and three daughters erupted into flames and the family narrowly escaped, with one daughter suffering serious injuries in the process. In the moments before the fire, Yuriy’s wife says she saw gasoline being poured through the home’s mail slot.
The fire has been deemed an arson as police search for a suspect or suspects. While Vyshnevskyy is a pastor at Victoria’s Ukrainian Catholic Church, police have not said whether the arson was a potentially targeted hate crime.
On Thursday, police released surveillance video purporting to show a witness driving past the home in the 1100-block of Caledonia Avenue before the fire was set.
We are seeking a potential witness to an arson at a Victoria residence that occurred early Wednesday morning.
Please help us identify the vehicle & occupant(s) below. The vehicle is shown at full speed & then half-speed for ease of identification. https://t.co/jRC48EGJaX pic.twitter.com/CMDpa8ILso
— Victoria Police (@vicpdcanada) April 21, 2022
“The witness was driving a light-coloured, possibly white, four-door vehicle,” police said in a news release. “Investigators are seeking to identify and speak with the occupant or occupants of this vehicle.”
Anyone who recognizes the vehicle and knows the driver is asked to call police.
VicPD’s Major Crimes Unit is also asking anyone with information, any witnesses or those who may have dashcam or surveillance footage of the area of Cook Street and Caledonia Avenue between midnight and 1:30 a.m. Wednesday to contact them at 250-995-7654 extension 1, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.