VICTORIA -- Oak Bay police say they are on the lookout after a man was reportedly seen “purposely and aggressively” coughing on people at a park Thursday.

OBPD deputy chief Mark Fisher says the department first received reports of the incident at Bowker Creek Park on Thursday evening.

A young boy told police that he had seen a man riding a bike at the park around 8:30 a.m. Fisher says that the boy spotted the man coughing on a “woman and her child” as they passed. Then, when the boy walked near the man, the man allegedly rode up to the boy and began coughing on him.

“He was quite concerned about it,” said the deputy police chief.

Police then searched the area but did not find the man. Fisher notes that there was a “significant delay” between when the incident occurred, on Thursday morning, and when it was reported in the evening.

Fisher says that police continue to search for the man, who is described as someone in their 30’s who was wearing a black helmet and black trackpants at the time. He was also riding a beige mountain bike and has wavy brown hair.

“Obviously at this time we don’t know if it was someone infected with COVID but all the same it’s a matter of respect and decency,” said Fisher.

When asked if he though the situation could be some sort of joke or hoax, Fisher said that “it’s not something I think anyone would find humours or funny at this time.”

The deputy police chief added that one member of the department told him that they had a lead on the identity of the man and that police would be following up with the individual later this week.

“It’s concerning, just the behaviour in general,” said Fisher. “I think we all need to do our part to prevent COVID-19.”