As he does most mornings, on Monday, April 20, Harry Bains was checking his Twitter account when he saw that a man had been shot and killed in his riding over the weekend.
The NDP MLA for Surrey-Newton felt terrible for the aggrieved family and for the community. He retweeted a post saying, “Another day, another shooting.”
The escalating gun violence in the city was becoming too much, he thought. More than 20 shootings had occurred in Surrey in just over a month.
A half an hour later, he heard the news that would shake is world.
The 22-year-old man who was killed was Bains’ nephew, Arun Bains.
“The Earth shifted from under our feet,” Bains said. “You never expect news like that to hit you and your family.”
Arun (left) was rushed to hospital just before 3 a.m. on Sunday, April 19, after being shot near 126 Street and 88 Avenue.
He died from his injuries in hospital.
The young man’s death is believed to be linked to a series of brazen street shootings involving rival drug dealers that has plagued Surrey and North Delta in recent weeks.
Police say Arun Bains was “known to be associated to the people connected to the street level drug trade conflict.”
However, the family says Bains had no links to any such activity.
“Arun was not a criminal. He was not a gang member. He was loved by everyone who knew him,” the family said in a statement. “Arun was a fine young man who loved his family and had a bright future ahead of him.”
Harry Bains said his brother and wife told him there was nothing to indicate Arun was living a lifestyle that might put him in harm’s way.
Bains said whenever he saw Arun, he was “very nice, sweet, very respectful. He would go out of his way to help you out.”
Police are still investigating the series of shootings and the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team is working to solve the murder of Bains.
Police are asking anyone with information about any of these shootings or the activities of any of the people involved to contact the Surrey RCMP or the Delta Police, or to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
Police have also set up a special tip line at 604-915-6566.