Canada 'Escalation' of threats, vandalism against Vancouver churches: police

01:43  23 july  2021
01:43  23 july  2021 Source:   msn.com

Group behind church court challenges hired private investigator to follow judge

  Group behind church court challenges hired private investigator to follow judge WINNIPEG — A group supporting multiple churches across the country in court challenges against COVID-19 public health orders has admitted to hiring a private investigator to follow a Manitoba judge. "I accept full responsibility and sole responsibility for my decision to retain private investigation firms for observation of public officials," said John Carpay, president of the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms. Carpay apologized for his "poor judgment" during a special hearing Monday called by the judge overseeing a court challenge of COVID-19 restrictions in Manitoba.

Vancouver Rape Relief and Women’s Shelter says that threats and vandalism against the organization have ramped up since Vancouver city council’s decision earlier this year to claw back funding based on the organization’s policies excluding transgender women from accessing some of its services. Spokesperson Hilla Kerner told the Courier that more “dead roadkill” was found nailed to the door recently, and a few months ago someone shoved a dead animal into the mail slot. Kerner said the group is frequently on the receiving end of threats and slurs on social media, but this is the first time

In recent months, there have been acts of vandalism involving Catholic churches and statues of various Canadian historical figures across the country as part of an outpouring of public anger over the discoveries of the mass graves. However, in a private post on Facebook, Siebring reportedly urged people not to lump the removal of the cross together with other acts of vandalism until the motive is known. Siebring told CHEK news that the North Cowichan/Duncan Royal Canadian Mounted Police is investigating the disappearance of the cross. Think your friends would be interested?

VANCOUVER — Police say there's been a "dramatic increase" in the number of vandalism or mischief incidents against properties owned by churches in Vancouver and they're concerned an escalation could lead to injury.

a cup of coffee on a table © Provided by The Canadian Press

Sgt. Steve Addison said Thursday there have been 13 incidents since early June including threats to set fires. Paint has also been used to deface buildings and rocks have been thrown through windows at Christian churches.

One pastor found a canister with about four litres of lighter fluid and rags near the side of his church while doing rounds at 4 a.m. He also saw a man standing in the middle of the street watching the building, police said.

Arrest made after Muslim woman, daughter faced 'terrifying' threats Hamilton police believe was hate crime

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Fires, desecration, vandalism and thefts plague houses of worship. Since the beginning of May, there have been almost 20 cases of vandalism against Christian places of worship in Europe, according to a watchdog organization that documents anti -Christian activity on the continent. Churches have been attacked recently in Germany, Scotland, England, France, Poland, Spain, Italy and Austria, according to the Vienna-based Observatory of Intolerance and Discrimination Against Christians in Europe , an independent organization founded with the help of the Council of European Bishops’ Conferences.

VANCOUVER — Vancouver Police Department (VPD) Chief James McElvain spoke publicly Monday night, confirming that his police force has participated in efforts to protect businesses at Vancouver Mall from potential rioters over a two-day period Sunday and Monday. On Sunday, about 100 protestors gathered in Esther Short Park for a protest that did not turn violent. Much more concerning to McElvain was threats the VPD became aware of that indicated rioters were planning to attempt to vandalize businesses at Vancouver Mall.

The incidents correlate with the discovery of unmarked graves of children outside the former residential school in Kamloops and elsewhere in Canada, Addison said.

"I'm here to say there are better ways to express your anger and frustration and express your view than committing crime."

He said police are worried there could be a "contagion effect" that causes people to become emboldened to participate in more risky activity.

"People may think their doing this for a noble cause," Addison said. "It's not for a noble cause. It's affecting people and it's criminal."

Many people live in the city's churches, while others serve as shelters, raising the possibility that someone could be hurt, he said.

Several Catholic churches have recently been vandalized or damaged in fires following the discovery of unmarked graves at former residential school sites. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has joined Indigenous leaders in echoing the call for an end to the fires.

Addison said property crime investigators are involved in the cases in Vancouver. The hate crimes and criminal intelligence units are also looking into the incidents, he added.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 22, 2021.

The Canadian Press

'Escalation' of threats, vandalism against Vancouver churches: police .
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