Salmon Arm  

Elderly driver robbed of vehicle in Sicamous after giving ride to stranger

Senior robbed of vehicle

An elderly driver was assaulted and his vehicle stolen after he picked up a stranger.

RCMP spokesperson Cpl. James Grandy says Sicamous RCMP were notified of the incident about 3:30 p.m.

Police spoke with the victim and a witness at the gas bar in Sicamous where the robbery happened.

The 90-year-old man had been at a fast food restaurant in Salmon Arm earlier that afternoon when he was approached outside by a man, asking for a ride.

The victim eventually agreed to drive the man east, and they departed in his small SUV.

"The victim pulled into a gas station in Sicamous, where he told the stranger that was as far as he would be taking him. The man then grabbed the keys from the ignition of the vehicle. He told the victim to exit the vehicle before striking him once in the head and pushing the victim out of his own vehicle," says Grandy.

A witness called police, and Revelstoke RCMP set up a roadblock in an attempt to locate the stolen vehicle, however it was located abandoned in the Malakwa area.

Footprints from the vehicle led back to the highway.

"Despite an extensive search of the area, the suspect responsible for the robbery was not located," says Grandy.

The suspect is described as possibly in his 40s and was wearing a plaid lumberjack style jacket that was black or blue in colour. The man had a scruffy appearance and was six feet tall, with an average build.

The victim was treated at the scene and taken to hospital with minor injuries to his face and hand.

"This incident illustrates the dangers associated with offering rides to people you are unfamiliar with," says Sicamous RCMP Sgt. Murray McNeil.

"If you are intimidated by the persistence of someone asking for a ride or money outside a business, go inside and inform staff, who can call police to assist you.

"I find this crime particularly disturbing as the suspect took advantage of an elderly man who offered to help him. The suspect used violence to rob an innocent senior of their vehicle who could not defend themselves after they had agreed to offer assistance to a person they did not know."

Anyone with information is urged to contact Sicamous RCMP or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

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