Victoria police says a report of an attempted kidnapping and another report of a robbery on Dec. 29 are not believed to be connected.
On Sunday at around 11 a.m. officers were called to Bastion Square where a woman reported that she returned to her vehicle in the area when a man, unknown to her, approached her from behind, grabbed her, brandished a knife, and told her she needed to go with him. The woman was not physically injured.
Earlier at around 3 a.m., at Blanshard and Johnson streets, a suspected reportedly approached a woman from behind, grabbed her, and attempted to get her to go with him. That woman was also not physically injured, police said.
Based on the early investigation, police had said the two incidents could be connected. Then on Friday, Victoria police said additional information indicates these two incidents are not linked and are now believed not to be connected.
Police also said further investigation into the incident at Bastion Square has “reduced the threat to the public.” Investigators now believe the suspect may be may be suffering from mental health and/or substance abuse concerns which lead to his actions. Police said several tips have come forward regarding potential suspects and investigators are requesting the public remain vigilant.
VicPD Major Crime detectives are still investigating the incidents.
Police said they are aware of recent posts on social media identifying potential suspects as well as describing alleged incidents.
“Some of these alleged incidents were posted to social media before, or instead of, being reported to police,” VicPD said in a statement.
“Investigators continue to ask those with information about a potential suspect to call the Victoria police non-emergency line at (250) 995-7654 or Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477. While well-intentioned, posting images of individuals who resemble suspect descriptions endangers investigations and, more importantly, puts potentially innocent people at risk of harm.”