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Suspects named in gutless attack

The mother of a handicapped Kelowna woman is relieved police have two suspects in mind in a brazen pepper spray attack on her daughter and a care worker.

The incident occurred back on September 1 when Chris Smith's daughter and her care worker had stopped at Chichester Park in Rutland after a day of hiking.

Two young teenagers came up on BMX bikes and proceeded to pepper spray them in their faces and their eyes.

The boys jeered and laughed as they rode off.

Smith says she is keeping her fingers crossed that the boys will 'have the book thrown at them' if they are found guilty and are forced to do community service as part of their punishment.

"If they have to work with the handicapped and learn what generous and kind people they are, maybe they would learn from that," says Smith.

RCMP say two boys, age 14 and 16 were already in custody on other, unrelated charges, when they became aware of their possible involvement in the pepper spray attack. 

RCMP are determining whether to file charges of Assault Causing Bodily Harm and Assault With a Weapon with the Crown.

According to police the suspects came to the attention of the RCMP after they apparently bragged about their exploits. Rumours circulated and the information got into hands of people who contacted police.

Smith meantime says the incident still traumatizes her daughter.

"With the Psychiatrist's help we are getting there. We had to have an intervention. It was really difficult on my daughter," says Smith.

"She thought she'd been real naughty and done something wrong. It's been a real struggle for her."

Smith says the memory of the incident could remain with her daughter the rest of her life.

The attack dramatically affected her daughter's caregiver as well.

"She keeps thinking there might have been something she could have done, but there isn't a thing she could have done better, she's been wonderful."

They have been supported by a lot of people and groups in the Okanagan, from Theo to The Society for Community Living.



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