“The people were unpredictable,” said Bradley, a Vancouver-based makeup artist. “The general chatter and the talk, most people were appalled with what was happening, but you didn’t know what to expect.”
In Bradley’s video, three women stand out in the crowd.
Toward the end of the video, and the end of Bradley’s night, she captured three young women trying to defend a car against a crowd of men. As one man starts to smash the windows, the diminutive women pull him off. Another man tries to push the car on its side, and the women haul him off. The crowd cheers each time a man successfully attacks the car, but the mob also hangs back every time the women go on the offensive. The men won’t punch the women, but they do sneak up on the side and break the car windows.
It’s an insight into mob mentality. Some men — who at least retain enough sense not to strike a woman — are spurred on by the crowd to nevertheless inflict damage in a way that someone would rarely do alone.
The women, however, seem to epitomize those who have the courage to stand up for themselves and for what’s right. Many in Vancouver have also pointed out that hundreds of people went downtown the next day and scoured the streets to such an extent that Bradley said the area looks perfectly clean, minus the boarded-up windows.
“The city is moving on,” Raiska said.
The police received more than one million photographs and hours of footage of the riots and are trying to identify the perpetrators. A number of people have come forward and admitted to their part in the night’s violence, including Nathan Kotylak a 17-year-old national water polo player who was caught on film setting a police car on fire.