Two people were stabbed in separate incidents in downtown Nanaimo yesterday.
Police rushed to the Salvation Army’s New Hope Centre at 19 Nicol St. shortly after 1 p.m. on Tuesday, May 9, when a man who was bleeding walked into the facility and told a staff member he’d been stabbed.
“A significant amount of blood was observed,” said reserve Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesperson.
Officers checked security video footage, which showed two people getting into a confrontation. Police located a suspect a short time later in an alley near the intersection of Milton and Nicol streets and arrested him on suspicion of assault with a weapon and uttering threats.
The suspect, a 46-year-old man who O’Brien said is well-known to police, was later released on a promise to appear in provincial court in Nanaimo on June 27.
“Why he was released was because at this point, we’re still reviewing video evidence and we’re looking for reliable corroborating witnesses…” O’Brien said. “There was a number of people around – most were not co-operative.”
The 56-year-old victim, who police discovered had been stabbed with a corkscrew, did not require hospitalization.
Police are hoping members of the public can help identify a suspect in a second stabbing incident that occurred at a supportive housing unit on Wesley Street shortly before 9 p.m.
O’Brien said police arrived at the scene to find one person being treated for multiple stab wounds.
“It was determined that an unknown person had attended to that location and assaulted the individual, then left, possibly by vehicle,” he said.
The victim’s wounds were serious but non life-threatening and he was taken to hospital, in stable condition, for treatment.
“Several people were present, however, they were in various stages of consciousness and coherence due to their drug use,” O’Brien said. “There were no viable witnesses and the victim was not able to identify the suspect at that time.”
Police are continuing their investigation and hope tips from the public can further the case.
“We’re currently looking to understand why this happened. There may be a connection between the two, but that’s not fully supported at this time,” O’Brien said. “We’re hoping people can come forward and give us a hand.”
Anyone with information about the Wesley Street incident is asked to call the Nanaimo RCMP detachment non-emergency line at 250-754-2345 and quote file No. 2023-15528.