Mounties in Burnaby are issuing a warning to the public after multiple carjacking incidents during the past week.
In a news release, police say they believe the following four incidents are connected. Three of the incidents targeted drivers from an unregulated Chinese ride-sharing app.
Incident number 1
On Sunday Feb. 13, 2022, on Spruce Street between Canada Way and Royal Oak Avenue, police say two suspects described as teenagers, brandished a knife at a rideshare driver who was called to the area for pickup.
The suspects claimed to be police officers before taking the vehicle.
Police say the vehicle was later recovered in the Highgate area.
Incident number 2
At roughly 3 p.m. on Feb. 15, a suspect brandished a gun and tried to steal a vehicle with the driver still inside in a garage near Burford Street and Imperial Avenue.
The suspect was not successful and fled the area.
Police say the victim in the incident was not a rideshare driver.
Incident number 3
On Feb. 15, 2022, at 11:30 p.m., a suspect targeted a rideshare vehicle that was stopping to pick up a customer. A knife was brandished at the driver and the suspect claimed to be a police officer before stealing a 2015 black Audi S4.
The vehicle has not been found.
Incident number 4
On Feb. 17 at around 11 p.m. on Elwell Street, a Mercedes was stolen from a rideshare driver on his way to pick up a customer, with a knife brandished by the suspect.
Shortly after, the stolen car was involved in a hit and run that damaged a parked vehicle.
Police say witnesses reported the suspect fleeing into a waiting SUV with several other people inside.
Two of the suspects are described as teenagers while another is listed at 20 to 30 years of age.
“Our investigators believe these four incidents are connected, but the motive is not yet known," Burnaby RCMP Media Spokesperson Cpl. Mike Kalanj said in a news release.
"We are asking all drivers to be cautious, including rideshare drivers from all services.
"It’s concerning that weapons were brandished in each of these cases, and that the suspects claimed to be police to two of the victims. We want everyone who drives in Burnaby to be aware of these incidents.”
Kalanj says police are in the process of collecting evidence.
Anyone with information is asked to call Burnaby RCMP at 604-646-9999 and quote file number 22-5696.