Assault victims forgive attacker
Sep 19, 2013 / 6:46 am
It was an emotional scene inside Kelowna's downtown Metro Community Church on Water Street Tuesday.
Church Pastor, Laurence East, says the wife of the man charged following a dramatic scene early Sunday afternoon in Kelowna's downtown core met with the two men injured as a result of the assaults.
"Our community centre is always open and both gentlemen who were hurt were in here and they were able to embrace," says East.
"The wife of the aggressor came in and she asked for forgiveness on behalf of her husband and they were very happy to offer it. They hugged. It was a powerful statement."
East confirmed one member of the congregation was badly beaten up and ended up in hospital with a concussion while another was stabbed in the chest and arm, as he and a third man attempted to follow the suspect.
He did stress the incident occurred outside the church following a Sunday morning service and barbeque.
"One of the members of our congregation who was going through some personal turmoil in terms of his marriage and relationship had been using drugs and was inebriated and he ended up in an altercation with a gentleman and in a fairly unprovoked attack badly hurt that gentleman," says East.
He says two other men pursued the attacker down the street 'not to engage him but to simply keep tabs on him.'
"They kept asking bystanders to call the cops," added East,
"Finally when they caught up with him at Tonics Pub, the aggressor turned on them and one of them had to engage the aggressor. They tried to restrain him until the cops got there and in doing so he had a pair of scissors and stabbed the man twice, once in the chest and once in the arm."
The arm wound was the more significant of the two requiring surgery.
East says the video featured on Castanet was somewhat misleading in that it looked as though the victim of the attack was the aggressor.
"Actually he was just in shock shouting at the guy 'how could you do this at church, how could you do this, we're a church"' He was really referring to the fact he (the person who stabbed him) beat up an older guy," says East.
The 44-year-old suspect, Ryan Waters, has been charged with Assault, Assault Causing Bodily Harm and Assault with a Weapon.
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