The Surrey RCMP’s Gang Enforcement Team was expanded July 3 and police say it’s already producing good results. (Photo: Surrey RCMP)

At least five of seven 2018 Surrey homicide victims were shot

Surrey RCMP says gangsters feeling ‘heat’

SURREY — Of Surrey’s seven homicides so far this year, at least five victims died by gunfire.

And four other people were injured in shootings in the city so far this year.

The most recent shooting was on Sunday July 29, at about 4:35 p.m. in the 7800-block of 138th Street in Newton.

“The incident appears to be targeted with no public safety concern known at this time,” Sergeant Mike Roberts said in a press release.

Surrey RCMP Corporal Elenore Sturko would not confirm reports that as many as six shots were heard and a house had been struck by bullets. Police have yet to identify a suspect and there are no known injuries.

“I can’t confirm any of the investigational details with you,” she told the Now-Leader at press time, “just that it’s early and ongoing. It appears to be a targeted incident with no ongoing concern for public safety known at this time.”

The first shooting in 2018 was on Jan. 4, when a man was seriously injured in the 17400-block of 64th Avenue in Cloverdale.

The first fatal shooting was on Jan. 7, in the 17800-block of 64th Avenue, claiming the life of a man whose identity police have not revealed. Surrey’s second shooting homicide of 2018 was on March 9, when Pardip Brar, 23, of Delta was killed in the 6700-block of 137A Street in Newton.

On May 5 a man was shot in the 10300-block of 149A Street and was treated for serious injuries in hospital. On June 4, Jaskarn Singh Jhutty, 16, and Jaskaran Singh Bhangal, 17, were shot dead on 40th Avenue near 192nd Street in South Surrey and on June 23, Paul Bennett, 47, was shot dead in his driveway in the 18200-block of 67A Avenue in Clayton. Two days later, a man was injured by gunfire in the 7700-block of 184th Street in South Surrey.

On July 15, a 35-year-old man was shot in the 13900-block of 108th Avenue and was taken to hospital to be treated for injuries that were serious but not considered to be life-threatening.

Meantime, the Surrey RCMP says gangsters have been “feeling the heat” since the detachment’s Gang Enforcement Team was expanded on July 3rd.

But by how much that team has expanded is not being made public.

“For operational precautions and security reasons we don’t release the actual numbers of members assigned to our units in the detachment,” Sergeant Chad Greig explained.

Sturko said that since the expansion, SGET officers completed 89 street checks involving 188 people and 74 vehicles “believed to be associated to gang activity.” It resulted in seven charges being laid, 35 violation tickets being issued, one vehicle seized and “various intelligence on multiple individuals captured,” she said.

READ ALSO OUR VIEW: Surrey’s crime stats give food for thought

So far there have been 29 shootings in Surrey in 2018. There were 59 shootings in Surrey during 2017, in 2016 there were 61 and in 2015 there were 88.

“Since 2015 our shots fired files have decreased but, as those involved in gangs continue to change their tactics, so must we,” said Assistant Commissioner Dwayne McDonald, in charge of the Surrey RCMP.

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Assistant Commissioner Dwayne McDonald, Surrey RCMP’s officer in charge. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)

Staff Sergeant Mike Hall, acting proactive enforcement officer, said the increased police presence is “definitely being felt by those individuals involved in gang activity and the local drug trade.

Hall said that the Surrey Gang Enforcement Team with help from other units “is actively targeting those individuals who pose high risks to public safety in Surrey. Through a combination of overt observation and interaction, and enforcement, our goal is to make them realize their illegal activities and associated violence are not welcome in our city.”



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

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