Police are searching for the victim of a downtown purse snatching after officers witnessed a man on a bike steal a woman’s shoulder bag early Sunday night.

Around 5:30 p.m. on November 29th, a woman was walking north on the east sidewalk of Bute Street between West Georgia and Melville Street when she was approached from behind by a man on a bike who snatched a purse from her shoulder. Officers who saw the theft from their car turned on their lights and siren, causing the thief to drop the purse and flee north on Bute Street. With the police in hot pursuit, the crook rode east on Melville Street, dumped his bike in front of the Tableau Bar and Bistro located 1181 Melville Street, and ran inside. With police on his heels, he made his way to the back of the bar where, following a short struggle, he was ultimately taken into custody.

Upon returning to the street, the woman and her purse could not be found.

The thief was taken to hospital where he was treated for minor injuries and was then transported to the Vancouver Jail where he is now facing charges for breaching his court imposed conditions.

He is Aboriginal, in his mid-20’s with an average build and short black hair. He was wearing a black jacket, red pants and black runners. He was carrying an orange shoulder bag and was riding a white mountain bike.

Anyone who knows the identity of the woman whose purse was stolen is asked to call the Vancouver Police Department.