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Acquittal in Campbell River Walmart stabbing shocks victim

The security guard stabbed in the Campbell River Walmart in December, 2021 is disgusted by a judge’s decision to acquit the man charged in the incident.
Leanne and Ron Beaven are shocked by a judge’s decision to acquit a man charged with stabbing Ron in a December 2021 incident while on the job as a security guard. Photo by Alistair Taylor/Campbell River Mirror

The security guard stabbed in the Campbell River Walmart in December, 2021 is disgusted by a judge’s decision to acquit the man charged in the incident.

“We need a justice system that actually works for the people,” Ron Beaven said. “We used to have a good justice system. Canada was a good place, you know. I’ve really lost faith in our government.”

Beaven, 70, was on the job in the Campbell River Walmart Dec. 7, 2021, when he stepped in to help another security guard – who just happened to be his wife Leanne – who was asking a man to leave the store.

The man had previously been told to leave the store but had returned in a disguise that included wearing a wig.

Ron rounded a corner and before he could assess the situation, he was attacked with a blade.

“I didn’t recognize him because he had this wig on and all this. So before I even knew, boom, he had me in a (head)lock,” Ron said.

Ron found himself in a position where he couldn’t move to protect himself.

This was the first time in his 30-plus year career in security that someone had got the jump on him like that.

“And all these years, you know … nobody ever got me in a position like that,” Ron said. “And he just kept stabbing and stabbing and stabbing and I said to him ‘haven’t you done enough?’ Because I was starting to, I was starting to … fade. I was starting to slide. And finally he let me go.”

The man then left with a number of 55-inch TVs.

Leanne took off her body cam harness to wrap around Ron’s arm and one of the store employees, who was a former first responder, and another woman, an ER nurse, took over the first aid, saving Ron’s life.

Ron was stabbed numerous times, lost a lot of blood and was rushed to hospital in critical condition.

READ MORE: Manager of security guard stabbed at Campbell River Walmart talks rising violence

Ron suffers from permanent nerve damage in his arm and struggles with PTSD as a result of the incident.

Charges stemming from the incident were laid against Nathan Sprout.

He was released from custody May 26 after a judge ruled that he was not guilty on all charges.

The Mirror was not in court on that day and the judge’s reasons for judgement have not been posted online by the BC Provincial Court.

READ MORE: UPDATE: Suspect had been previously asked to leave Campbell River Walmart

The incident has left the Beavens shocked and shaken.

“I just can’t make sense of it,” Leanne said. “That’s basically what it comes down to and it’s hard. It’s hard to, you know, it’s hard to accept.”

She recognizes that they have to move on with their lives “but it’s just not right. It’s wrong. And, like I said before, you know, that we’re not the only ones where, you know, the system has failed us.”

Leanne feels she should do something about this but feels helpless.

“I want to take some action and I don’t know where to start, right? Like yeah, because it’s just so outrageous.”

She says there’s a lot of interest in their story and they’re overwhelmed by the support they’ve received from people.

“It really means a lot but, you know, that in itself says how outraged the public is, right?”


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