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Guilty pleas entered in Vancouver 2022 stranger attacks

Martin Lamb was charged after multiple attacks on strangers in Vancouver's Fairview neighbourhood in August 2022.
Martin Lamb was due in Vancouver Provincial Court Feb. 28 for sentencing.

A Vancouver man has been found guilty of breaking and entering and aggravated assault in connection with a series of stranger attacks in August 2022.

Martin Lamb was due in Vancouver Provincial Court Feb. 28 for sentencing on the charges but refused to be transported to court so the sentencing could not proceed, Crown prosecutor Jenny Dyck told Judge James Sutherland.

He pleaded guilty to breaking and entering and aggravated assault on Jan. 23.

He was found guilty of another, related assault last fall.

He had been charged with another count of aggravated assault and two of assault but those charges were stayed on Nov. 7.

All of the charges were from an initial court information sworn Aug, 23, 2022 that was later split into two informations with the stayed charges put on that list.

However, Dyck said that as she was preparing for sentencing she found it difficult to create submissions as there were other “more serious” offences that occurred within hours that were also coming up for sentencing.

She suggested to the judge it would be more appropriate for one judge to assume care of all the sentencings.

“I agree,” said defence lawyer Chandra Corriveau. “It certainly seems to me it would be very difficult to sentence the assault simpliciter in a vacuum.”

The stayed proceedings from the first file became part of a second file sworn Feb. 27, 2023.

There, Lamb was charged again with one count of aggravated assault and two of assault.

On Feb. 28, 2023, Lamb pleaded not guilty to those charges and was found guilty on one count of assault Oct. 13.

He is now due to be sentenced for assault, breaking and entering and aggravated assault from both files.

The incidents

The charges were laid in connection to a series of unprovoked attacks that occurred in Vancouver's Fairview neighbourhood.

On Aug. 18, the VPD launched an investigation after three people were attacked in the space of a few hours by someone they didn't know.

The first assault happened near the False Creek seawall, just under the Cambie Street Bridge, shortly after 6:30 p.m. when a 70-year-old man was approached from behind, tackled to the ground, then punched and kicked several times by an unknown man.

Nearly 45 minutes later, a 33-year-old woman was walking her dog when she was approached from behind by an unknown man and punched in the face. The assault happened in a lane near West 11th Avenue and Spruce Street.

The third attack happened just before 8:45 p.m. when a 23-year-old woman was stabbed by an unknown man while walking near West Broadway and Alder Street, suffering a serious but non-life threatening injury.

About 36 hours later, in the early hours of Aug. 20, there was a fourth assault.

A 54-year-old woman was attacked inside her Riley Park home following a home invasion. The woman suffered multiple serious and life-threatening injuries that required hospitalization.

“Though the attacker fled following the final assault, patrol officers located and arrested a suspect nearby,” said Sgt. Steve Addison in a news release. “VPD Major Crime investigators then gathered additional evidence linking the suspect to the three previous attacks.”

With files from Allie Turner and Maria Diment

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