WARNING: Some details in this story might be disturbing to readers. Discretion is advised.
Richmond RCMP officers are hoping the public can help them identify a man responsible for what they are calling a “hate incident” at a fast-food drive-thru.
Police said the man was standing near the drive-thru window of a Burger King in Ironwood Plaza on May 1 when he approached a family in an SUV and began yelling at them.
A bystander intervened, police said, asking the man to leave, and the suspect started hurling anti-Asian slurs at him.
Police only learned of the incident after a video of the interaction began circulating on social media two days later.
In the video, which was shared from a dashcam, the bystander can be heard telling the suspect to “get the f— out of here.”
The suspect then yells at the bystander, saying “F— you m———-r. F— your f—— Chinese mother!”
Mounties are now asking the suspect involved to come forward.
Burger King manager, Ramandeep Sangha, was not working the day of the incident but she told Global News she was upset to hear about the interaction.
She said they understand the issue started over a mask.
“Making a racial comment toward someone is completely unacceptable,” she said.
Sangha added that the suspect was apparently walking through the drive-thru and when invited to come inside the restaurant, he said he could not because he didn’t have a mask. Sangha said her employee offered the man a mask and then others started making comments and that’s when it escalated.
“Richmond RCMP is committed to giving hate crimes, and other hate incidents where hateful language is used, our fullest attention and oversight,” Cpl. Ian Henderson said in a release on Thursday. “But to do a fulsome investigation, we need people to report these incidents immediately.
“We need people to call us immediately, before posting video of hate crimes or hate incidents online.”
The suspect is described as Caucasian, 5-feet-6-inches tall with a heavy build, short grey hair and a partial beard.
He was wearing a grey, long-sleeved shirt, blue jeans and black-rimmed glasses at the time, police said.
Anyone who knows the man’s identity, who witnessed the incident, or who has photos or video of this incident, is asked to contact the Richmond RCMP at 604-278-1212, quoting file number 21-11759, or to contact CrimeStoppers.
Esther Sim with the organization Movement for Asian Lives said she thinks it is a good idea for police to release an image of the man they are looking for in this incident.
“Often people don’t know what to do when they experience hate crime so they don’t report,” she said. “So I think posting the photo of the person will help people identify this person, bring this person forward to identify a solution and without going public it’s very hard and difficult for the police to identify the people who have committed crimes.”
Sim said, in her opinion when it comes to hate crimes, a lot of people don’t know what to do when they experience a hate crime and she encourages everyone to support all incidents to the police.