RCMP officers search around rows of luggage carts as screens block off an area of the sidewalk after a shooting outside the international departures terminal at Vancouver International Airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

RCMP officers search around rows of luggage carts as screens block off an area of the sidewalk after a shooting outside the international departures terminal at Vancouver International Airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Police say gang conflict in Metro Vancouver may be behind shooting death at airport

Police said this generation of gangsters is taking things to new level and have no regard for community safety

The death of a 28-year-old man outside the departure terminal at Vancouver International Airport is believed to be linked to the ongoing gang conflict that has gripped British Columbia’s Lower Mainland, police say.

Sgt. Frank Jang of the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team said the victim is known to police and the shooting needs to stop.

“I think we’re all tired of seeing the violence that is taking place on our streets,” Jang said during a late news conference Sunday.

An SUV with at least two people inside was seen leaving the scene.

A short time later, fire crews in Surrey were called to attend a vehicle fire in a back alley, about 28 kilometres from the airport. Several targeted shootings have ended with similar vehicle fires.

Richmond RCMP Chief Supt. Will Ng said the shooting took place about 3 p.m. on Sunday and shortly afterwards one of their officers caught up with the suspect vehicle.

Someone from the vehicle fired their weapon while driving down a busy street, hitting the police cruiser, Ng said.

The officer didn’t return fire and stopped the pursuit, he said.

READ MORE: Man killed in brazen daylight shooting at Vancouver airport

There’s been a string of shootings resulting in murders and injuries in Metro Vancouver over the last few weeks, taking place near shopping centres, restaurants and busy streets.

Jang said a shooting in a public place is a matter of great concern.

“We know all too well that bullets do not discriminate,” he said.

“They could land on an unsuspecting person, a member of the public. Enough is enough.”

The murder of a prison corrections officer in the parking lot of a busy Delta, B.C., shopping mall had all the hallmarks of a gang hit, police said last week.

READ MORE: Man killed in North Delta shooting identified as BC Corrections officer

Ng said this newest generation of gangers is taking things to another level and have no regard for community safety.

“They will stop at nothing to target rivals, even if it’s at an international airport in broad daylight on Mother’s Day, and putting everyone at risk, including shooting at a police officer, which indicates to me these people have no care whatsoever.”

Because gangers are taking it to the next level, Ng said police will do the same.

“Next level strategies are a very intentional and strategic response, targeting individuals involved in the Lower Mainland gang conflict, and specifically targeting them with a collaborative approach with all of our law enforcement agencies, partners,” he said.

Jang said it is clear that the message isn’t getting through to these people.

“Please don’t kill one another, stop the violence. Apparently it’s falling on deaf ears to some, and they continue to harm one another, they continue to shoot their guns, putting all of us in jeopardy.”

Jang said police are looking for dashcam video from those who were in the area Sunday between the airport and the location where the vehicle was found on fire to help with their investigation.

Delta’s police chief said last week that all police departments in B.C.’s Lower Mainland were working on the shootings.

Neil Dubord acknowledged the “anxiety” around the very public shootings, saying they showed a “shocking” disregard for public safety.

On Sunday evening, yellow evidence markers peppered the area where the shooting took place. A tall, white screen remained in front of an entrance to the terminal, shielding the crime scene.

Red and yellow police tape surrounded the scene, both inside the terminal and outside where passengers would normally be dropped off to catch their flights.

The Vancouver airport Authority said in a statement that the airport was open and safe for airport workers and those who need to travel.

“Our thoughts are with those impacted by (Sunday’s) incident.”

It said the safety and security of its employees, community and passengers remains its priority and it is fully co-operating with RCMP to support the investigation.

Federal Public Safety Minister Bill Blair said in a statement on Twitter that the shooting was disturbing news.

“My thoughts are with the communities in the Lower Mainland who have been impacted by gun and gang violence far too often, particularly over the last week,” Blair said.

Hina Alam, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

crimeRCMP

Just Posted

A Grade 8 class at L.A. Matheson Secondary. March 2021. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
B.C.’s return-to-school plan good, but Surrey teachers hope there is room for adjustments

Surrey school district to receive $1.76M of the $25.6M provincial pandemic-related funding

Surrey Fire Service battled a dock fire along the Fraser River late Friday night (June 18). It was on Musqueam Drive, near Industrial Road, around 10:45 p.m. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
Fire engulfs pier on Surrey side of the Fraser River

Pier has reportedly been unused for a long time

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Kalyn Head, seen here on June 4, 2021, will be running 100 kilometres for her “birthday marathon” fundraiser on July 23. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Woman’s 100-km birthday marathon from Chilliwack to Abbotsford will benefit Special Olympics B.C.

Kalyn Head hopes run raises awareness, advocates for inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities

Most Read