Karl Dey received a Certificate of Merit from the Vancouver Police Board on Wednesday. (Colleen Flanagan/THE NEWS)

Karl Dey received a Certificate of Merit from the Vancouver Police Board on Wednesday. (Colleen Flanagan/THE NEWS)

B.C. man gets award for thwarting theft, sexual assault – all in 10 minutes

Karl Dey helped the VPD take down a violent sex offender

A Maple Ridge man was in the right place at the right time twice within 10 minutes, thwarting a theft and a sexual assault.

On Wednesday, he was one of 22 recipients of a Certificate of Merit from the Vancouver Police Board – its highest award for civilian bravery.

Karl Dey was making his rounds in downtown Vancouver delivering water for Mountain Springs Water Company on Dec. 11, 2017 near the intersection of Homer Street and Cordova Street in Gastown.

That morning, he entered a shoe shop and went to the back room with the person working to see how many bottles were needed. When he returned to the showroom, he noticed a man standing by the door with something under his jacket. When the man ran, Dey gave chase. Turning a corner, there was an unmarked police car passing at the moment and a female officer asked Dey if the man stole something. When Dey said yes, the officer jumped out of the car to give chase, as well.

They tackled the man on the street.

It turns out the man had stolen a backpack worth around $600.

Dey, 6’1, 198 pounds, was asked to wait by his truck to make a statement to police. So he finished his delivery, then just as he went back to his truck to wait, he heard a woman scream.

“Like a curdling scream,” said Dey.

He looked in the direction of the scream and ran across the street to a clothing store. He saw a man pulling his pants up and a woman yelling that he tried to rape her. Dey told the man to get on the ground. But the man challenged Dey before running out a back door on to Water Street.

Dey again chased and tackled the man near the steam clock by Cambie Street. He held the suspect with the help of another man until police arrived.

“Then the cops looked at me and said, ‘Aren’t you the same guy that was just dealing with something else up the road there?’”

Dey received his award this past week.

“Of the many people who have received an Award of Merit over the years, never before has a recipient committed two deserving acts in such a short space of time,” reads the certificate.

“For leaping into action, not once, but twice, and ensuring a prolific property crime offender and a violent sex offender were arrested by police, despite a risk to his own safety.”

Dey has a daughter near the same age as the female victim, who’s about 25. When he heard her screams, he said his fatherly instincts took over.

“It wasn’t even a hesitation. I just saw that girl and the look on her face and that guy … ” he added.

“I would do it again in a heartbeat.”

The girl’s family reached out to Dey to say thank you. Her father gave him a hug.

Dey’s wife Michelle couldn’t be more proud of him.

“That’s totally in his nature,” she said of his heroics, although he’s not usually a physical guy.

“He’s not a hot-head.”

When he first texted her about what happened, she thought he was joking.

“You would hope that somebody would be there for you or your daughter if they needed help.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

The Certificate of Merit that Karl Day received from the Vancouver Police Board on Wednesday. (Colleen Flanagan/THE NEWS)

The Certificate of Merit that Karl Day received from the Vancouver Police Board on Wednesday. (Colleen Flanagan/THE NEWS)

Just Posted

A spokesperson for the Peninsula Country Market is upset that their third and final Winter Market won’t happen this Saturday in Central Saanich’s Centennial Park following moves by the municipality. (Facebook/Peninsula Country Market)
Central Saanich postpones weekend Winter Market, organizers upset

Lorea Tomsin said municipality’s move runs counter to provincial direction

As cyclists and pedestrians pass by at Humboldt and Government streets, a garden of blooming black-eyed Susans brightens up the northwest corner of the Fairmont Empress Hotel property on a partially sunny November afternoon. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)
Keep your umbrella handy for the next while around Greater Victoria

November has lived up to its reputation as one of the rainiest months of the year

Peninsula Panthers' owner and general manager Pete Zubersky questions the decision-making process leading to the suspension of play in the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL). (Black Press Media File)
Peninsula Panthers’ owner questions process behind suspension of Junior B hockey action

Pete Zubersky does not understand actions of provincial body administering amateur sports

Victoria-Swan Lake MLA Rob Fleming moves to the role of transportation minister in the NDP’s new cabinet. (B.C. government file photo)
Greater Victoria MLAs claim key roles in new cabinet

Transportation, Indigenous relations, children and family development ministries headed by locals

Penny Hart is emotional outside the Saanich Police Department as she pleads for helpt to find her son Sean Hart last seen Nov. 6 at a health institution in Saanich. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
VIDEO: Mother of missing Saanich man begs public to help find her son

Sean Hart last seen leaving Saanich mental health facility Nov. 6

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Nov. 24

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(AP Photo/Haven Daley)
POLL: Do you think the current COVID-19 restrictions should continue beyond Dec. 7?

One week into the new restrictions to curtail the spread of the… Continue reading

Police in Nanaimo are looking for a suspect who wore a black-and-white striped hoodie and rode a yellow mountain bike when he allegedly stole three children’s backpacks from a daycare facility. (Photo submitted)
VIDEO: Thief steals children’s backpacks from daycare in Nanaimo

Suspect rode a yellow mountain bike and made off with backpacks hanging on fence

Arthur Topham has been sentenced to one month of house arrest and three years of probation after breaching the terms of his probation. Topham was convicted of promoting hate against Jewish people in 2015. (Photo submitted)
Quesnel man convicted for anti-Semitic website sentenced to house arrest for probation breach

Arthur Topham was convicted of breaching probation following his 2017 sentence for promoting hatred

Langley School District's board office. (Langley Advance Times files)
‘Sick Out’ aims to pressure B.C. schools over masks, class sizes

Parents from Langley and Surrey are worried about COVID safety in classrooms

The Klahoose First Nation village on Cortes Island is under lockdown until further notice due to a positive COVID-19 test. Photo courtesy Kevin Peacey.
Cortes Island First Nation community locked down due to positive COVID-19 test

Klahoose First Nation has had one positive test, one other potential case

Ladysmith’s 1st Avenue will be lit up until January 15. (Cole Schisler photo)
Light Up parade a no-go, but Ladysmith’s streets are still all aglow

Although the tradition Light Up this year was cancelled, folks can still enjoy the holiday lights

The baby boy born to Gillian and Dave McIntosh of Abbotsford was released from hospital on Wednesday (Nov. 25) while Gillian continues to fight for her life after being diagnosed with COVID-19.
B.C. mom with COVID-19 still fighting for life while newborn baby now at home

Son was delivered Nov. 10 while Gillian McIntosh was in an induced coma

Most Read