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Chilliwack RCMP confirm tire slasher targeting U.S. fishermen

A Seattle man says his car tires were slashed Saturday while he was fishing the Vedder River, apparently by someone with a grudge against Americans.

Brad Hole's car was the only one with U.S. licence plates in the parking area

near Borden Creek, but many more U.S. fishermen may have had their tires slashed.

A Canadian Tire employee said 12 U.S. visitors with slashed tires came in for repairs "on Saturday alone."

"They were slashing the tires in pairs," he said, so the vehicles couldn't be moved without a tow truck.

Chilliwack RCMP said there were nine reports of vandalism to American vehicles parked in the Keith Wilson Road area on Saturday.

According to Internet fishing blogs, up to 30 instances of tire slashing may have occurred recently all along the Vedder River and in campgrounds in the area.

"Tires were slashed on 20 vehicles up and down the river," one blogger said, "and the culprits were not only doing one tire but multiple tires, and they were specifically targeting vehicles with American plates."

Hole said he's been fishing the Vedder for 10 years, and he was shocked to find his tires slashed.

"I've never had anything like this happen before," he said. "Both tires were flat on the driver's side, front and back."

Hole said the tire slashing may be the work of only one vandal, but it reflects poorly on the area in general.

"Such a shame that we spend big money for fishing licenses, lodging and dining in your city to have this happen," he said.

Abbotsford fisherman Joey Booth said he is "disgusted and outraged" by the vandalism, and he apologized to the victims "on behalf of all decent Canadians.

"My hope is that the person or persons responsible will brag about it and find themselves reported to the RCMP," he said.

"They have brought shame to our community and to our country."

RCMP Const. Tracy Wolbeck said many of the incidents took place in broad daylight, in an area where many people are walking.

"Our American guests came to Chilliwack for a weekend of fishing, and instead spent their time and money having their vehicles repaired," she said. "It's very disturbing that someone would specifically target vehicles from the United States."

Anyone with information is asked to call the Chilliwack RCMP at 604-792-4611 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.

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