Vancouver Police is investigating after a woman was sexually assaulted at a beach over the weekend, and officers believe the suspect may have approached other people.
A woman in her 40s was sunbathing at the beach around 7:30 p.m. Sunday (May 14) when she was approached by a man who claimed to be a massage therapist, according to a release from police.
The man began touching the woman and then sexually assaulted her before walking away.
The investigation is ongoing, and investigators believe the same man may have approached a number of other people on the beach over the weekend. Officers would like to speak to anyone who may have interacted with him or saw him massaging anyone else.
The suspect is described as South Asian, in his 30s with a medium-heavy build and short, dark hair. He was reported to have been wearing a black hat, black sunglasses, a white and blue striped shirt and beige cargo shorts.
The suspect has been arrested, but charges have not yet been approved. Anyone with further information is asked to call 604-717-4034.
This comes after Vancouver Police say officers responded to more than 1,800 calls between Friday and Monday, as the year’s first heat wave brought huge crowds to the city’s beaches and parks.
Sgt. Steve Addison said that was an increase of 36 per cent from the same time last year, and a 250-per-cent increase for calls to beaches in the area.
“While the vast majority of people stayed safe and acted responsibly, whenever we see this many people gathering outside, there’s bound to be more incidents requiring police,” said Addison, adding that warm weather “always brings more people to the city from surrounding communities.”