News

Man attacked in his Qualicum Beach home

A Qualicum Beach resident says he was pepper-sprayed and physically assaulted when a masked man broke into his home early Sunday morning.

Chris Rissanen, a 25-year-old who lives on 6th Avenue, is calling the incident a home invasion. Police say members of the public do not need to fear for their safety in relation to this event.

"This was definitely not a random act of any nature," said Oceanside RCMP Cpl. Jesse Foreman. "We don't feel there is any risk to the public.

Rissanen told The NEWS he could not identify his attacker. He also said five police cars and an ambulance came to his home Sunday morning after the alleged attack at 1 a.m. Sunday. Despite the violent nature of the alleged attack, Rissanen also said he doesn't believe Qualicum Beach residents should be fearful about a similar attack in their homes.

"I definitely think it was targeted, for sure," said Rissanen. "I don't think the public should be concerned."

Rissanen contacted The NEWS on Monday morning to tell his story. He said he was contacting the media and using social media networks to try to get the alleged attacker identified.

"The person was wearing all black, with a white mask," he said. "When I got sprayed, I couldn't seen anything after that. My skin was literally on fire. The best way I can describe it is a sunburn only 10 times worse."

The NEWS asked Risannen why he believed he was targeted. The NEWS also asked Rissanen if he was involved in the drug trade.

"I'm not exactly involved," he said. "But I know people."

Rissanen said he had a "bad lifestyle" as a teen but "ever since I was 19 I've been on this positive path."

Police said they brought a canine unit from Courtenay to Qualicum Beach early Sunday morning in an unsuccessful attempt to locate the alleged attacker. Police say the investigation into the incident continues.

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