Vancouver police are hunting for a man believed responsible for tying up and beating a sex trade worker who freed herself by jumping from a moving van.
Const. Brian Montague, a media liaison officer with the Vancouver Police Department, said the incident occurred about 8 p.m. Monday when the 42-year-old woman was picked up in the Downtown Eastside.
Montague said the man drove the woman to a secluded area before he allegedly tied her up and beat her. About 30 minutes later, police responded to several 911 calls reporting a woman being dragged from a van at Clark Avenue and 13th Street.
"The woman had managed to partially free herself and, fearing for her life, jumped from the moving van," Montague said. "This is obviously very concerning for us. I can't imagine how terrified this woman must have felt being beaten, tied up and driven somewhere where she didn't know what was going to happen to her."
Police described the suspect as a white male with a "tanned complexion." He is balding with a moustache or goatee and possibly has an Australian accent.
The suspect was driving a white panel van with roof racks. The woman remains in hospital and is being treated for injuries, including a head wound.
"Obviously we do have incidents that are reported to us involving sex trade workers and individuals, but nothing to this extent," said Montague when asked how often police are called to incidents involving sex trade workers.