Southgate Centre assault victim identified

CBC News has learned the identity of the victim in a violent assault at Southgate Centre earlier this week.

Iain Armstrong, 61, is in hospital with life-threatening injuries after trying to intervene in a robbery Tuesday around 10:30 a.m.

His son, Sean Armstrong, confirmed his identity to CBC News in a statement.

“My father is an incredible person, a model of unparalleled kindness and selflessness for us all,” said Sean.

A Facebook page set up by Iain Armstrong’s family said he has a spinal cord injury that has resulted in paralysis.  He remains in a coma.

The public page is the same place where people are expressing their thoughts and prayers for a full recovery.

Police erected tarps around the scene at Southgate Mall where a mall employee was viciously assaulted by a man attempting to steal from a kiosk Tuesday. (CBC)

Iain is a mall employee who suffered severe head trauma after stepping in when he saw a man try to steal from a vacant kiosk at the mall. It’s unclear if a weapon was used in the attack.

“He was viciously assaulted to the point where he was transported to hospital in critical condition,” said Insp. Erik Johnson.

Johnson said the suspect was part of a group of young men loitering around the mall; two of those men have since been arrested.

Police are interviewing the men, but Johnson said the mall’s security footage has captured a clear picture of the man wanted in the attack.

“In the age we have right now, where everyone has a cell phone, we encourage people instead of being good Samaritans, by intervening in things like this, to try to get whatever is happening on video. Because it definitely helps the police investigation.”

Johnson said the assault was brief but vicious. As soon as the store employee was on the ground, and the suspects had fled, bystanders stepped in to help.

A spokesman for Southgate said the mall would not comment pending the on-going investigation. 

Police are still searching for the man suspected in the assault. Police ask anyone with information about this incident to contact the EPS at 780-423-4567 or #377 from a mobile phone. 

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