Woman at Banff National Park says man told her to 'go back to your own country'
Published Sunday, August 4, 2019 12:49PM EDT
Last Updated Sunday, August 4, 2019 2:32PM EDT
A female tourist in Banff National Park shot a now viral video, moments after she alleges a man told her to “go back to your own country.”
Victoria, who didn’t want to give CTVNews.ca her last name, fearing potential reprisals, posted a 20-second video of the exchange on her Twitter and Instagram accounts, both of which have been viewed 592,000 times combined.
“I was just assaulted by a man who first told me to go back to my own country, at Banff National Park,” she wrote in the posts. “But I think it would be good if it goes viral. These people don't get to win.”
In the video, Victoria asks a man, “Did you just tell me to go back to my own country?” The man, wearing a black bandana and Harley Davidson shirt, can be heard saying “if you don’t want me to throw your phone away -- walk.”
He then appears to try and grab her phone and asks, “Is that what you wanted?” As he and three other people with him walk past her, one of them tells Victoria, “you’re pushing limits you don’t want to push.”
Victoria told CTVNews.ca over the phone “it was really quick. He didn’t hit me but he tried to push me and take my phone ... but I stood my ground.”
'I'M HALF AFRAID THAT THEY’RE GOING TO DO SOMETHING'
The long-time American-immigrant said she first encountered the man as she was waiting to snap photos at Banff National Park on Saturday.
She then called the man rude because she said he’d cut in front of her and other families who had been waiting to see the falls in Johnston Canyon. “Mind your own business,” she alleges he said.
Then, as Victoria was making her way down the only path to the parking lot, she spotted the man’s group and said, “you know, your friend is really rude.” And after a short back and forth, Victoria said the man told her to go back to her own country.
That’s when she started recording. As they walked down, she said she started recording because “I’m half afraid that they’re going to do something.”
She said the group egged her on saying, “What? Are you going to call the police?” Then at the bottom of the path, she said the group was telling a park ranger that Victoria had been harassing and recording them without permission.
She asked the park ranger to call the police but the group quickly left. Once RCMP officers arrived, she shared the video and she relayed what she said happened.
Victoria posted the video because she hopes it will help police identify the man. She said “I really just want the justice system to deal with him. And whatever happens, at least it’ll be on his record.”
She immigrated from Russia as a refugee more than 20 years ago and says her accent is noticeable. But it’s only been in the past couple years she said she’s dealt with racist comments.
Victoria reported the incident to police. RCMP Sgt. Marlene Brown confirmed this and told CTVNews.ca over the phone that the people in the video have been identified and that the case is ongoing.
I was just assaulted by a man who first told me to go back to my own country, at Banff National park. Please share. @BanffNP I reported it to the proper authorities and I hope something happens. But I think it would be good if it goes viral. These people don't get to win. pic.twitter.com/FRe9xnq2tV— TheTravelTipster (@TravelTipsterGo) August 4, 2019
Yes it very much is. However, I speak with an accent as I am an immigrant. America is my home and bullies of all shades will do well to keep that in mind. https://t.co/F2Qzd3DZf1— TheTravelTipster (@TravelTipsterGo) August 4, 2019
They found him. I just called the police. Thank you internet and Twitter!!! https://t.co/EhfJPLmGMF— TheTravelTipster (@TravelTipsterGo) August 4, 2019