A 15-year-old boy who was stabbed in a park on Vancouver’s west side Saturday has died from his injuries, according to police. The teen had emergency surgery but passed away at BC Children’s Hospital Sunday. Police say they found the victim injured after they were called to Almond Park at West 12th Avenue and Alma Street around 1:30 p.m. because of “an altercation” between two groups of teenagers. “VPD investigators believe the victim, was stabbed in the chest by another teen. He lost consciousness and collapsed in the park. A 14-year-old boy was arrested nearby and has been charged with possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose. Homicide detectives have taken over the case, and anyone with information can call Crime Stoppers An online fundraiser for the young man’s family has already doubled its goal of over $14,000, and the list of condolences continues to grow with messages of heartbreak over his death.
Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole wants the Trudeau government to secure the border by temporarily halting all international flights. O’Toole told an Ottawa news conference this morning that too many people are bringing COVID-19 variants into Canada and that the measure is needed to get infection rates under control. Federal data shows says 100 flights landed in the country between April 11th and 22nd carrying at least one passenger who tested positive for COVID-19 after landing. Canada has banned direct flights from India and Pakistan, and required anyone arriving via an indirect route to get a negative test in the last place they land.
About 1.9-million doses of COVID-19 vaccine are due to arrive this week, but federal officials aren’t expecting a drop of Oxford-AstraZeneca. It has been in heavy demand since several provinces lowered the minimum age for the shot to 40. The U-S is sitting on tens of millions of doses of AstraZeneca, but is under pressure to send them to India, which is buckling under a surge of infections. Canada is expecting its first shipment of the Johnson & Johnson single-dose shot, more than one-million Pfizer-BioNTech doses and about 650-thousand doses of the Moderna vaccine
Disturbing graffiti has been photographed on the Vancouver Seawall comparing B.C.’s top doctor to the Nazi doctor Joseph Mengele. Graffiti has also been spotted singling out B.C.’s premier with a comparison to the Nazis. Vancouver City Councillor Pete Fry says the graffiti that reads, “Dr. Bonny Henry Mengele,” has left him with a “very palpable sense of anger.” Nico Slobinsky, with The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, took to Twitter Sunday to express his outrage, noting Joseph Mengele, also known as the ‘Angel of Death,’ was a German doctor who served as chief physician at the extermination camp of Auschwitz. “The role of a Public Health Officer is the exact opposite of the role Mengele played. One is responsible for the health and wellbeing of the population, the other tried to destroy humanity,” his tweet reads. Slobinsky calls the graffiti “disturbing” and “disgusting.” Over the pandemic, anti-Semitic incidents have risen across the country as some Canadians compare the COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions to the Holocaust. Fry adds while restrictions, health orders, and living through the pandemic is difficult on everyone, people should not trivialize the suffering of a community. Fry says he will be reaching out the Vancouver Park Board to ensure the graffiti is being covered as soon as possible.
A group of coworkers in Surrey collected $500,000 after matching four extra numbers on a Lotto 6/49 and BC/49 ticket. “I saw a whole pile of zeros and I didn’t think it was right,” Russell Martin said, who purchased the ticket on behalf of his coworkers. “The hair on the back of my neck stood up. I quickly did the math and realized how much we each won.” According to a British Columbia Lottery Corporation news release, Martin purchased a ticket for his group from Town Pantry on 64 Avenue on March 6 and checked his ticket at a self-checker at 7-Eleven. Martin and his co-workers have been purchasing tickets as a group for seven years. “This win means something to each of us and will change our lives in different ways,” he said in the release. “We are all excited and everyone has different plans for the money. Each one of us will be helping out our family.” The release did not specify how many people are in Martin’s group. “No one believed me and everyone thought I was joking with them,” Martin said of his coworkers reaction to the news. Last year, B.C. lottery players redeemed more than $32 million in prizes. “Lottery players who are part of a group should always appoint someone to coordinate collecting participant’s money, buying the group’s tickets, tracking group winnings and posting results,” the release said. “When purchasing as a group, it’s always a good idea to have a record of which group members have contributed to the ticket purchases.”
Our Canadian Tennis star Bianca Andreescu has been forced out of the Madrid Open due to a positive COVID-19 test. she took to twitter saying “After testing negative twice before my flight to Madrid, I was sadly informed that I tested positive upon arrival for COVID-19 and therefore will not be playing at the Madrid Open later this week,” Andreescu wrote in a statement. “I am feeling good, I’m resting and continuing to follow the health protocols and safety guidelines. I look forward to getting back on the court very soon.” Andreescu’s last on-court appearance came at the Miami Open earlier this month, wherein she reached her first final since claiming the 2019 US Open title. An ankle injury forced her out of that Miami Open final, however, and kept her from competing in the Billie Jean Cup this month as well. The Mississauga, Ont., native also endured a 15-month layoff while recovering from a 2019 knee injury, her initial return coming at the 2021 Australian Open.
BC is reporting 2,491 new cases of COVID-19 over the past three days, as well as 17 additional deaths. The number of active cases is just under 82-hundred with 484 people hospitalized, including 158 in intensive care. Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says B-C has not seen any increase in people dying at home from COVID-19 as has been reported in other provinces. But she says a coroner’s investigation has confirmed the death of an infant at Children’s Hospital in January was due to COVID-19 — the youngest death in the province.
White Rock RCMP pulled over two motorists on Marine Drive Sunday evening, one of whom was travelling nearly three times the posted speed limit. In a tweet issued Monday, police said the first motorist was travelling 81km/h in 30km/h zone. The driver, who had a learner’s licence and was driving without a supervisor, had their vehicle impounded for seven days and is facing two charges. The second motorist, who was clocked in going 88 km/h on the same road, had their vehicle impounded for seven days, is facing two charges, and was turned over to the Canada Border Services Agency on a warrant.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki says the U-S will dole out 60-million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to other countries based on need. Psaki says the U-S is waiting on approval from regulators to share 10-million doses in the coming weeks. The remaining 50-million doses are still in production and likely won’t be subject to approval until May and June. President Joe Biden has said the U-S hopes to provide more AstraZeneca doses to Canada soon, after an initial “loan” of 1.5-million doses last month.
The B-C government is investing 56-million dollars to expand mental health and substance use services for children, youth and their families. Mental Health Minister Sheila Malcolmson says the funding will mean families don’t lose critical time when treatment is urgently needed. The money will support child and youth teams that include clinicians, peer support workers and education counsellors who will help develop a care plan that connects patients with mental health and substance use services. The province says the funds will be used to hire about 350 new full-time workers and to expand an early years mental health support system.