RCMP are investigating the theft of a number of Pride flags that were taken from outside businesses and homes in Victoria, P.E.I.
Alyssa LaGrange was outside the Landmark Oyster House late Tuesday evening when a man pulled up in a black Dodge Caravan. She told CBC News that he took off with the restaurant's Pride flag, which had been put in place to show its support for LGBTQ people and causes.
"I'm bisexual, so as a member of the LGBTQ community, it really, really affected me," LaGrange said. "I've been pretty privileged to not have to deal with, like, blatant instances of homophobia…. This is kind of the first for me in a long time."
LaGrange ran after the vehicle briefly with a view to getting more information to report to authorities.
She said she later found out that other flags had been stolen throughout the village.
"I was really upset. My boyfriend was really upset, sort of vicariously through me," she said.
"This village is so accepting of everyone from all walks of life. It's actually really beautiful. And to see somebody come here and just mess it all up was really, really disheartening."
We're so conspicuous about our acceptance for the gay community that we ended up becoming a target. - Alyssa LaGrange
Then, she said, she took comfort from a Facebook post her father wrote, saying his first reaction was anger but then a thought occurred to him.
"He realized that this village was..… we're so conspicuous about our acceptance for the gay community that we ended up becoming a target," LaGrange said. "And that's something that we should actually be proud of."
RCMP confirmed to CBC News that they are investigating the matter following at least two complaints from members of the public.
While that investigation continues, LaGrange said more Pride flags are being bought to replace the ones that were stolen, so Victoria will continue to be rainbow-clad as Pride Month draws to a close.
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