An eye-catching billboard commissioned by the Vancouver Police Department has already been vandalized.
Anti-police graffiti was sprayed over the original message on the billboard, which read, “Be cautious of strangers getting close or asking for help.”
The billboard is outside Rogers Arena and faced a lot of scrutiny on social media when it was put up, with many saying it was misleading or confusing.
The billboard is part of a campaign to warn the public about distraction thefts.
Such thefts involve a suspect or suspects approaching someone on the street, then using distraction techniques to steal their jewelry or other valuables.
Billboards in four languages — English, Chinese, Punjabi and Tagalog — were going up around the city to tell them how to protect themselves.
The cost is being covered by Metro Vancouver Crime Stoppers and the Vancouver Police Foundation.