Vancouver Police are praising a trio of Good Samaritans who helped officers arrest a suspect who allegedly robbed a blind man of his cane in the West End Tuesday afternoon.

“We depend every day on the caring citizens of Vancouver to help us keep our neighbourhoods safe, and we’re extremely thankful to these kind strangers who stepped up to help us right a wrong,” said Sergeant Steve Addison. “While they could have chosen to drive on, they instead did the right thing and helped us make an arrest in this cruel offence.”

The victim, a 40-year-old newcomer to Canada, is legally blind and relies on a white cane to navigate the city. He’s been sleeping in shelters for weeks, but typically walks around in the West End during the day when the shelters are closed.

While standing near Davie Street and Thurlow Street around 3:45 p.m. Tuesday, a stranger, for unknown reasons, grabbed the cane from the blind man’s hands. The victim tried to hold on, but was overpowered and was left stranded at the intersection after the suspect walked away with the cane.

“Three good Samaritans – a man and two women in their twenties – were passing by in a car when they saw the robbery happen,” adds Sergeant Addison. “They stopped, confronted the suspect, and followed him until our officers arrived moments later and made the arrest at a bus stop near Davie and Burrard Street.”

VPD officers recovered the cane, returned it to the victim, then took the suspect to jail.

Justin Jeremy Heron, 37, is charged with one count of robbery.

The motive for the robbery is not known.