Edmonton police are investigating after a woman was held at gunpoint at a popular west-end strip mall near 170th Street and 99th Avenue.

Police say the 46-year-old woman was walking through the strip mall’s parking lot with her young daughter when they were approached by the suspect, who was holding what appeared to be a handgun.

The suspect demanded the woman’s purse and car keys, said police.

The mother and child tried to run away but the suspect knocked the woman to the ground and assaulted her.

Police say bystanders tried to intervene, but ran for safety when the suspect pointed his weapon at them.

The suspect then ran to a nearby vehicle that had been left running, threatening the owner before stealing the car and driving off.

The suspect is described as Caucasian in his mid-20s, with short brown hair and a moustache. He is between  5’8” and 5’10” in height with a stocky build. At the time of the assault, he was wearing a black jacket, grey sweatshirt, jeans and white running shoes.

The stolen vehicle is a blue 2009 Toyota Venza with licence plate ZGG 418.

Police are asking for the public’s help to identify the suspect and to track down the stolen car, but warn he should not be approached as he is considered armed and dangerous.

Clarifications

  • An earlier press release issued by the Edmonton Police Service described the suspect as either Caucasian or Aboriginal. Subsequent reports from police say they are looking for a Caucasian male.
    Jan 31, 2014 3:29 PM MT