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Crime

UPDATE: Calls for change following Kelowna city bus killing

Kelowna residents call for change following Thursday's murder on a University 8 bus. .
Kelowna residents call for change following Thursday's murder on a University 8 bus. . Global News

KELOWNA — Some Kelowna transit riders — through social media — are calling for more security on city buses after a passenger was killed Thursday night.

The incident happened on a University 8 bus on Baron Road behind Dilworth Centre — off Highway 97 where a male passenger was reportedly stabbed in the neck by another passenger who escaped on foot. The victim was rushed to hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Police are still looking for the suspect and have put out a public appeal to identify the individual.

RCMP are expected to release more details later today.

Meanwhile, a number of Global Okanagan viewers have taken to Facebook to call for changes in the wake of Thursday’s incident.

“Vancouver has Security officers patrolling the bus system, perhaps Kelowna should consider this,” writes Skylar J. Plourde.

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“I take the bus a lot and never was comfortable. Now I’m really afraid. Especially since my husband is wheelchair bound. Yes more security, more than one driver, especially after 5 or 6pm,” writes Steph Scovill-Ross.

Others are expressing shock and say it’s time government steps in and does something.

“I am becoming less and less confident about my daughter’s safety riding the bus,” writes Shannon Born. “She tells me about some of the issues that go on daily as she rides Kelowna’s transit to and from school, she’s been followed by a couple different men who she says are intoxicated (which really scares her-I’ve had to pick her up at the stop so they don’t follow her home) and now this… The city of Kelowna (council and staffers) don’t seem to take this stuff seriously. They continue to turn a blind eye. And there’s no one to complain to because BC Transit office is located in Vancouver.”

Wendy Lee Solar echoes Born’s feelings.

“My daughter takes the bus at night also and tells me some of the stories that goes on,” says Solar. “I think the Kelowna Transit should start looking into some of these issues and start taking things more seriously.”

Marianne Belland also says it’s time Kelowna addresses the issue of passenger safety.

“Maybe more people should complain to our Mayor & Council about our transit system and look after it here instead of Victoria running our buses.. how do you think the bus drivers feel? ”

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Global Okanagan put in an inquiry with the City of Kelowna.

It has referred all inquiries to BC Transit in Victoria.

More to come.