‘Lack of intelligence’: Kelowna mayor condemns anti-pandemic vandalism on city hall

Second time in past month Kelowna’s city hall vandalized with messaging critical of COVID-19 response

Residents of Kelowna woke up on Remembrance Day to find city hall again scrawled with spray-painted statements condemning government response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran is disappointed and angry over the incident — the second one of a similar nature in the past three weeks. While he understands some people may be frustrated with the measures imposed to contain the pandemic, the mayor said the restrictions are largely out of the scope of the city.

“The City of Kelowna is clearly not behind some global conspiracy to take away someone’s freedoms,” he told the Capital News on Thursday morning, adding that it “shows the lack of intelligence of the person we’re dealing with.”

Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran addresses media from the front steps of council chambers on March 23. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran addresses media from the front steps of council chambers on March 23. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Basran said the two actions will cost taxpayers, but he did not have the actual dollar amount. In addition to the spray paint removal costs, Basran said the city will have to look at increasing on-site security, which will also come with a price tag.

“If this continues to happen, we can’t just ignore it,” he said. “It’s sad to think we have to be spending money to stop people from vandalizing public infrastructure.”

Criminal activity, Basran said, shouldn’t be used to voice frustration with provincial and national health orders.

“I hope anybody who knows who is responsible will do the right thing and phone the RCMP and share whatever information they have.”

The RCMP has released a still from security camera footage of a potential suspect — described as a six-foot-tall man with a slim build. At the time of the crime, 4:30 a.m. on Nov. 11, the man was wearing ripped blue jeans, a balaclava, and a black winter jacket with a hood.

The suspect is described as six feet tall with a slim build. (Kelowna RCMP)

The suspect is described as six feet tall with a slim build. (Kelowna RCMP)

Anyone with information is asked to call the Kelowna RCMP at 250-762-3300. For anonymous tips, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: michael.rodriguez@kelownacapnews.com


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