UBCO students on Academy Hill have claimed that suspicious middle-aged older men have approached them, asking where they live and insisting that they enter their car. The following are anonymous accounts of the interactions that two students have shared for this article.
On Friday 29th October, this student was about to walk down to her 8 am class when a light-coloured SUV in the parking lot near the Kelowna Brewing Company started and drove behind her, despite her moving out of the way for the car to pass. Before the student could head down the main path, the man in the driver’s seat asked her if he could give her a ride multiple times, and she denied it every time. The man then pulled off and went in the opposite direction of the university, indicating to the student that it was never his intention to go to the university. The person was described as being in his late 30s to mid-40s, had short black hair and a bit of a scruffy beard.
On Tuesday 2nd November, this student, their friend, and their dog went to Toppings Pizzeria and went to eat outside the establishment. A bald older man with a moustache wearing sweats approached them and continually asked them specifically where they lived, and the man said that he lived up North. He kept trying to get the students to enter his vehicle, in which there were two other young men wearing turbans and polo shirts. There was another vehicle on the side that the man who was talking to them kept returning to. One vehicle was a new white Range Rover Explorer, and there was a white Toyota Camry. The students decided to politely decline and leave. They took an alternative path to their place of residence by going around U1 where they met two other student residents and told them what had happened. The new white Range Rover Explorer pulled up to the roundabout in front of U1 and the students, all women and one dog, ran to the back of the building to hide. When the vehicle left, they were all able to enter U1 and the residents of U1 were able to harbour the two that had interacted with the men until they could be safely picked up.
Please be aware of this potential danger and be wary of anyone who may offer or insist that you enter their vehicle and inquire about your place of residence. If you observe any suspicious activity, if you can, reach out to the relevant authorities so that this matter can be investigated and monitored.