Oak Bay woman fends off attack with gardening tool

An Oak Bay woman threatened by an armed stranger used her gardening tool to stave off the attack.

Oak Bay police responded at about 12:30 p.m. Sunday to a report on Exeter Road, where a 60-year-old woman said she was threatened by a man while pruning the shrubs in her front yard.

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The man stood on the sidewalk just beyond the woman, holding a bright yellow cellphone. When the woman turned away, he approached her, pulled a weapon and made a threat, police said.

The pair had a struggle and the woman grabbed the weapon and began yelling for help, while hitting him on the head with her gardening tool. When the woman’s husband appeared, the man ran toward Beach Drive, police said.

The woman was not injured.

Police closed Beach Drive between Ripon Road and Lansdowne Road for 20 minutes while they searched for the man. They were assisted by Saanich police and its K-9 unit.

The man has not been found.

The man is described as white, around 40 years old and five foot 10. He was wearing a blue hoodie with the hood pulled up and large sunglasses. He was clean shaven.

“This attack appears to be completely unprovoked with no obvious motive. It occurred on a bright, sunny Sunday afternoon in a neighbourhood generally well-known for its peace and tranquility,” Sgt. Rob Smith said.

asmart@timescolonist.com

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