Investigators search for 4 witnesses to man's death in fight with police at Vancouver coffee shop

·2 min read

B.C.'s police watchdog is trying to track down four people who may have witnessed the death of a man during a confrontation with officers inside a Vancouver Tim Hortons last week.

The Independent Investigations Office was called in on the evening of Nov. 26 to probe the fatal confrontation inside the coffee shop at Terminal Avenue and Station Street.

VPD officers say the man had been inside the bathroom for half an hour when they were called, and alleged he was "agitated and aggressive" when he came out. He went into medical distress during a fight with the officers and was pronounced dead at the scene, according to police.

IIO investigators are now asking for help tracking down two men and two women who visited the Tim Hortons between 6:15 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. on the night of the incident.

The two women are believed to have been there together and are said to be in their 20s or 30s.

One was between five feet five inches and five feet nine inches tall, wearing a black, knee-length jacket, black tapered pants, white sneakers and a black face mask.

The second woman was between five feet three inches and five feet eight inches tall, and wore a grey hoodie, white headscarf, black sweatpants, white socks, black sandals and a black face mask.

Ryan Stelting
Ryan Stelting

The two men were at the coffee shop separately, according to the IIO.

The first is estimated to be between six feet and six feet two inches tall with a goatee, and was wearing a black hooded jacket, light blue or light grey baseball hat, black slim pants, brown boots and a light blue disposable surgical face mask. He may have been wearing glasses.

The other man is believed to be between five feet seven inches and five feet nine inches tall, and wore a green rain jacket, blue jeans, brown boots, black hoodie, navy baseball hat and a white disposable face mask.

Anyone with more information about the fatal incident is asked to call the IIO's witness line at 1-855-446-8477 or use the contact form on the iiobc.ca website.