METRO VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – It’s been a deadly few days of gun and gang violence in Metro Vancouver, with three killings in public places since Saturday.
In a show of how seriously this is being taken, four senior police officers spoke out together Thursday at RCMP headquarters in Surrey, condemning what’s happening and acknowledging the public’s concern.
A man was shot and killed near a popular restaurant in Vancouver’s Coal Harbour Saturday evening. There was another deadly shooting near a basketball court at Coquitlam’s Town Centre Park at around 6:30 p.m. on Monday. The third shooting was also during daylight hours, with a man shot to death at the Langley Sportsplex at around 9 a.m. on Wednesday.
It’s all too much and it has to stop, police said Thursday.
“We understand the public’s concern about these acts of violence and we share the same concerns,” said Insp. Michelle Tansey with the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT). “These shootings were a blatant disregard for public safety.”
That sentiment was echoed by Asst. Comm. Manny Mann, the officer in charge of the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit, which tackles gangs in our province.
“The gangsters are the ones that are making the community unsafe when they’re committing these violent acts in public places,” Mann said. “It’s very, very important that we get cooperation from the public, we get cooperation from the other gangsters and their associates and their families. They have information and they need to come forward with that information so that we can advance our investigations.”
Police leaders are voicing their concerns, insisting shootings have to stop, as the Lower Mainland sees a spike in local gang violence. https://t.co/ZlHThLpn0F #SurreyBC #LangleyBC #Coquitlam @IHIT @BCRCMP @VancouverPD pic.twitter.com/SVhuin8ZJm
— CityNews Vancouver (@CityNewsVAN) April 23, 2021
Tansey and Mann spoke alongside Supt. Lisa Byrne with the Vancouver Police Department and RCMP Chief Supt. Will Ng.
At Thursday’s news conference, Tansey identified the victim of Wednesday’s shooting at the Langley Sportsplex as Todd Gouwenberg, a 46 year old former mixed martial artist who had links to the United Nations gang.
— Martin MacMahon (@martinmacmahon) April 22, 2021
Byrne indicated Vancouver police will be sharing a “significant development” in relation to the killing of Harb Dhaliwal in the coming days. The Abbotsford man was shot to death Saturday night near a popular restaurant in Coal Harbour and reportedly was part of the Brothers Keepers gang.
The victim of the deadly shooting in Coquitlam was Bailey McKinney. IHIT believes the 20-year-old man was the intended target of the brazen shooting.
If you have any information that can help police solve these three recent murders, you’re asked to contact the relevant police department or Crime Stoppers.