Lachine canal business owner hopes social media helps him catch alleged vandals – Montreal

A business owner in the Lachine canal has issued a plea on social media to help him find the people who broke into his shop.

The owner of H2O adventures, a boat rental shop says his brand new craft was badly damaged and is now out of commission, costing him hundreds of dollars a day.

“These guys were willfully damaging the place. They spent a good five minutes trying to smash into the front door, they tried to get into the window, they purposefully broke the gate just for the sake of breaking the gate,” owner Marc Bartschat told Global News.

“I get the feeling that they probably took it for a ride went down that way then they ditched it to the side jumped out then just left it there. It was literally still running.”

READ MORE: The power of social media: How citizen reporting may impede active police investigations

Two weeks after filing a police complaint, with no news on the investigation Bartschat decided to take matters into his own hands.

One of the young men was wearing a West Island Baseball cap.

So he posted the alleged culprits picture on West Island Baseball’s Facebook page.

“We just felt like if we can find out who these people are and press charges, maybe that could prevent them from doing it to other businesses around here,” Bartschat said.

Montreal Police say they’re investigating the case but they don’t recommend the public ever take matters into their own hands.

“People have to understand that there could be some civil suits against them if any images are out in the public and if we arrest someone and it’s not the right person,” Montreal Police’s spokesperson Jean-Pierre Brabant said.

Police also say posting pictures online can interfere with their investigation.

READ MORE: How social media is changing police investigations and court proceedings

“The information could be provided to someone else and even the suspect. In that case, they can see it and destroy some evidence,” Brabant told Global News.

Meanwhile, Bartschat says his intention is to prevent anyone else from going through what he went through.

READ MORE: Vigilante online predator hunter pulls viral video from Internet

“The worst part of my business is just the stress of just every day you’re worried about who’s trying to break in, who’s trying to break stuff.”


© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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