New Westminster – On May 9th 2016 at approximately 5:30pm an adult female victim was seated on a bench in the 600 block of 6th Street when an unknown male approached her and demanded her bags. The victim refused, at which time the suspect allegedly sprayed her with a substance that is believed to be bear spray before grabbing her bags and running. A witness gave chase, but the suspect was able to get away after dropping the victim’s bags.
Numerous New Westminster Police Department patrol officers responded to the area but were unable to locate the suspect at that time. The victim woman was not seriously injured, but treated for exposure to the sprayed substance.
A potential suspect was identified early in the investigation and taken into custody the following day by members of the NWPD Street Crime Unit. Courtland Aaron Moffett, a twenty five year old male of no fixed address has now been charged with Robbery under section 344(1)(b) of the Criminal Code of Canada.
“We believe this was a random crime of opportunity against an innocent member of the public,” stated Media Relations Officer Acting Sergeant Jeff Scott. “We are pleased that we were able to identify and arrest this person as quickly as we did and we are grateful to the witnesses who came forward to assist us in the investigation”.