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Fight over tot photos stops traffic

Jul 28 2012

Victoria police temporarily detained two men when a fight broke out after one of them took photos of children in strollers on a bus.

The incident blocked traffic on Douglas Street between Hillside and Bay on Thursday afternoon, after police drew a gun on the father of one of the children. The father had run into the street with the photographer's bag, reportedly to deliver the camera phone inside to police.

Charges have not been laid, said Victoria police spokesman Mike Tucker.

"It's still under investigation, pending statements from the parties involved," he said Friday.

A woman said she was with her three children, ages eight, four and eight months. She noticed the man taking photos and asked him to stop and delete them.

The man said he was taking photos to document transit violations.

"I'm a disabled person and ever since I moved here to Victoria I noticed baby strollers were getting priority over us," he said.

"If you don't document it, no one believes you."

Strollers should be collapsible and clear of aisles, according to B.C. Transit guidelines. They may occupy wheelchair positions when other passengers don't need them.

"He took offence to where the strollers were placed," said Sgt. Byron Edwards. "Some people on the bus sided with him, others did not."

When the man announced his stop - the same as the woman's - she called her husband to meet them there. Police were also alerted.

The man told the Times Colonist he had taken 150 photos and videos of strollers on transit in the past year and a half, with the intention of making them public.

asmart@timescolonist.com

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