4 innocent bystanders injured in Langley, Coquitlam and Surrey shootings

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SURREY: Last week witnessed an increase in gun violence on the streets of Lower Mainland. These shootings were extremely tragic since innocent bystanders became victims along with those involved in the crime. Although the initial investigations found out that the violence is not related to Lower Mainland Gang conflict. But the police officials has reassured the public this does not take away importance of public safety and they are aware of the seriousness of the situation.

Chief Superintendent Ghalib Bhayani, Operations Officer for the Lower Mainland District RCMP along with Superintendent Duncan Pound, Deputy Operations Officer for the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of British Columbia (CFSEU) issued a joint statement to update the public about the gun crime and the police agencies efforts to stop this.

“We are here to address the recent shootings that have left four innocent bystanders injured in Langley, Coquitlam and Surrey, respectively. I want those victims and their families to know that we are thinking of them and wish them the best in their recoveries,” Bhayani said.

Bhayani said that police community was acutely aware that “these acts of violence impact the public’s sense of safety and well-being. That is unacceptable.” But he reassured the public that efforts are on to put a check on gun violence. He said that last year’s efforts had resulted in a decrease in gun violence, but “Unfortunately, what we are experiencing now is an evolution, in that we are seeing street level criminals in what looks like interpersonal conflicts creating violence on our streets.”

Superintendent Poundgiving details about the recent crime said, “While CFSEU-BC isn’t the investigative agency for the recent incidents, early indications are that in the three most recent shootings in Langley, Coquitlam and Surrey where one person lost their life and innocent bystanders were injured all initially appear connected to street-level drug trafficking. They do not, at this time, appear to have any direct links to the Lower Mainland Gang Conflict and do not appear to be connected to each other.”

That, however, doesn’t discount the seriousness of the incidents, as gun violence is completely unacceptable. “The disregard for the safety of the public and the police that gun carrying criminals continually show, highlighted by recent events, is unacceptable and we are doing everything we can to hold those responsible accountable.We also know that sometimes violence that occurs at the street level can escalate and draw in groups and individuals more entrenched and connected to conflicts like the Lower Mainland Gang Conflict,” Pound said.

He ended with a message to those involved in any level of drug dealing or gang-related activity. “It does not have to be an inevitability for you to end up either in jail or dead. There is help available. Please reach out to our Gang Intervention and Exiting Team. Call them at 604-897-6023.”

Shootings this week

Man shot in Guildford residence: On January 20, 2022, at 1:44 a.m., Surrey RCMP responded to the report of a man shot inside a residence in the 8700-block of 152 Street. Police arrived on scene and located a man suffering from a gunshot wound. The victim was transported to local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.Initial indications are that the shooting was targeted. 

2 injured in Whalley shooting: On January 19, 2022 Surrey RCMP responded to the report of shots fired inside a warming center in the 10600-block of King George Boulevard. Two people were located with injuries believed to be gunshot wounds. Both victims were transported to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and have since been released.The victims include a 24-year-old man who is known to police and a 57-year-old woman. Initial indications are that the man was the intended target of the shooting. 

Shooting at Newton residence: On January 18, 2022 Surrey RCMP responded to the report of a fight in front of a residence in the 13400-block of 66A Avenue. Upon arrival, officers located a 31-year-old man with a possible gunshot wound who was transported to hospital.  The injury sustained was confirmed to be non-life threatening and the victim is expected to be released from hospital shortly.A suspect was arrested on scene.The shooting is believed to be an isolated incident.