VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Vancouver police are releasing new information and appealing for witnesses in a high-profile double homicide case from early 2018 where innocent teenage boy was killed alongside a second victim.
Investigators are revealing they seized a burgundy or red-coloured Pontiac Montana a month into the investigation that was apparently involved in shooting near Indochine Kitchen and Bar near East Broadway and Ontario Street in January 2018. Investigators have been unable to speak to the registered owner and are asking anyone with information to come forward.
Alfred Wong, shown in a picture displayed at a Vancouver Police Department press conference. (Lasis Kretzel, NEWS 1130 Photo)
Alfred Wong, 15, was hit by a stray bullet as his family was driving in the area of East Broadway and Ontario St. when shots rang out on Jan. 13. He later died. It’s still unknown who fired the bullet that killed Wong.
Police originally said Whiteside was the original target of the attack, but now say they believe he was there to kill 28-year-old Matthew Navas-Rivas, who was at the nearby Indochine restaurant.
Navas-Rivas, who has a long gang and crime history, was unarmed and escaped unhurt, but was later shot and killed in a separate incident outside Tillicum Community Annex on Cambridge St on Jul. 25.
A second, unidentified shooter also opened fire during the January altercation. A third person also shot in the incident was later released from hospital.
In newly released dashcam footage, a dark pick-up truck is seen making an illegal left turn southbound onto Ontario St., away from the crime scene, around the time of the shooting. Police believe the passengers were likely witnesses to what happened.
“We believe that person, based on their driving maneuver, was aware that there was an incident unfolding, or a shooting unfolding, and then made that kind of erratic driving maneuver to get out of the area,” says Sgt. Mike Heard. “We believe they are a witness to the crime, in kind of a ‘wrong place, wrong time,’ is our investigative theory right now.”
Police seized a red Pontiac Montana involved in shooting. Also have video of dark pick-up truck turning into the crime scene at time of incident and want the people inside to contact them. pic.twitter.com/Kdqkl4l04L
— Lasia Kretzel (@lkretzel1130) January 11, 2019
Heard says police are coming forward with information a year after the shooting in hopes of pushing the investigation forward.
“These events have had a huge impact on lives of many. We have been in contact with the families of Alfred Wong and Kevin Whiteside, and have been providing as much information and updates as possible,” he says. “Today we are providing two new pieces of information to the public about the investigation and asking people with additional information to come forward and speak with investigators.”
Heard is asking anyone who was at the restaurant around the time of the shooting to come forward, as well as the drivers of the dark pickup truck.
“I think in a lot of these instances, in my experience, people believe there are a number of witnesses at the time and they don’t feel like their piece of information is that important, so they don’t contact police,” he says. “All we are here to say is that, their little piece of information, obviously they saw something based on that video clip we’ve provided, and it is important for them to reach out and make contact with us.”
Wong family struggles a year after teen killed
Police have also recently been in contact with the innocent teen’s family over the Christmas holidays as Heard says the one-year anniversary of a death, as well as the first holiday season, is particularly hard for grieving families.
“A year ago at this time, the Wong family was travelling on holidays with their children to enjoy the Christmas season,” he says. “A year going by and seeing your life altered forever, it’s a very difficult time for them. They are processing and its obviously very difficult.”
If you have any information about this crime, you are asked to contact detectives at 604-717-0515 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.