Caught on camera: 'Disgusting' spitting attack at B.C. Dollarama under investigation

RCMP in Surrey are on the hunt for a suspect after what police are describing as a "disgusting and egregious" attack on a private security guard at a Surrey dollar store.

Mounties say the incident happened at the Guildford Dollarama store on 153 Street around 5:30 Tuesday evening.

Video taken by someone in the store shows part of a confrontation between a security guard and irate man at the end of an aisle.

When the guard threatens to phone the police as he tries to get the man to leave the store, the man yells back and throws something at the guard.

A second portion of video then shows the man walking towards the front door, where the guard is standing.

Before leaving, the man spits in the face of the security guard from a very close distance.

Another customer can be heard gasping as the shocking attack unfolds.

"I was disgusted by what I saw," Sgt. El Sturko with Surrey RCMP told CTV News Thursday. "This assault is egregious, it’s disgusting."

And police believe the attack is criminal. They are pursuing assault charges.

"This kind of behaviour is absolutely unacceptable," Sturko added. "Anyone who sees the video will be shocked and disgusted by what they see."

RCMP launched an investigation on Wednesday, after a CTV News inquiry about the video which had been posted on social media.

Sturko says it’s troubling the incident had not otherwise been reported to police.

"If anyone feels something like a spitting is not worth our time, they don’t want to call the police. Absolutely it’s worth our time."

She is urging any witnesses to contact investigators. They are also looking to speak with the person who took the video, as it may play an important role in securing charges.

It’s unclear what may have started the dispute, and whether it may have involved a face mask or something else. In the video, the suspect is not wearing a mask on his face, but appears to have one under his chin.

Sturko says it’s possible the suspect could also receive a COVID-19 related fine.

The guard who was attacked works for Blackbird Security. The company told CTV News Thursday their employee is doing okay, given the circumstances, and has been given paid days off to recover.

Sturko says this isn’t the only spitting incident to happen in Surrey recently, and Mounties will also be investigating whether the same man is the suspect in any other cases.