On Monday, the Integrated Riot Investigation Team will recommend more charges against identified rioters. Since June, IRIT has sifted through a mound of digital evidence and has identified more rioters from the Stanley Cup riot in downtown Vancouver than expected. In the beginning of the investigation stage, 40 people were charged. Several hundred more charges are expected to be coming.
Each individual will have a minimum of two charges brought forward: participating in a riot and at least one other charge. The digital evidence packages, many of which include a 500- to 700-page report, will now be forwarded to Crown for approval.
Names are going to be withheld, but police will release details of each case, such as the age of suspects and their exact charges.
“This is what we have been looking for, to finally see the work that we’ve done come to fruition,” IRIT team commander Insp. Les Yeo said in an exclusive interview with 24 Hours Vancouver earlier this month.
“We’ll be working through this until we’re finished and every last (person) is held accountable.”
IRIT was also expected to release footage today of arrests being made, some occurring as recently as Friday. Yeo has said it could take up to two years before all suspects are charged.
A website titled, “Canucks Riot 2011” is depicting images on its website of people who are alleged to have committed criminal offenses and asking the public to contact Vancouver Police Department investigators if they recognize anyone at firstname.lastname@example.org or (604) 717-2541 or leave an anonymous tip with Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
It is really unfortunate that rioting after sports games has become more common. For us Chicagoans, we can still remember riots in the street by locals in 1991 even though the Bulls won their first NBA Championship! Win or lose, it seems some people just need a reason to act crazy and violent. Someday, these people may ruin it for everyone. Who knows what restrictions may have to be imposed around these games. With most local governments running out of money, they will no longer be able to afford to pay overtime to the police to babysit these foolish people.
Much of the research for this story came from STEPHANIE IP, 24 HOURS@ vancouver