Year in Review: Crime did not stop in Surrey, White Rock

Scene of the shooting from Saturday (Aug. 27) night in the 16600 block of 19 Avenue in South Surrey. (Shane MacKichan photo)Scene of the shooting from Saturday (Aug. 27) night in the 16600 block of 19 Avenue in South Surrey. (Shane MacKichan photo)
Police on scene of a fatal shooting at South Surrey Athletic Park on Saturday evening (July 30, 2022). IHIT announced Monday (Aug. 22) that 25-year-old Bryce Dallas Campbell of Surrey has been charged with two counts of second-degree murder and one count of attempted murder. (Photo: Lauren Collins)Police on scene of a fatal shooting at South Surrey Athletic Park on Saturday evening (July 30, 2022). IHIT announced Monday (Aug. 22) that 25-year-old Bryce Dallas Campbell of Surrey has been charged with two counts of second-degree murder and one count of attempted murder. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Outgoing Surrey mayor Doug McCallum arrives to court in Surrey on Monday, Oct. 31, 2022 at the beginning of his seven-day public mischief trial. (Photo: Malin Jordan)Outgoing Surrey mayor Doug McCallum arrives to court in Surrey on Monday, Oct. 31, 2022 at the beginning of his seven-day public mischief trial. (Photo: Malin Jordan)

The Lower Mainland gang conflict continued to make its presence felt in Surrey and across the Semiahmoo Peninsula in 2022

Shootings, drug seizures, stabbings and more — both gang-related and not — were frequently in the news during the past 12 months

A shooting at South Surrey Athletic Park on July 30 targeted three individuals, claiming the lives of two, while seriously injuring the third. Two of victims were known to police before the shooting. A suspect was arrested and charged with two counts of second-degree murder and one count of attempted murder.

READ MORE: Charges laid in July 30 double fatal shooting at South Surrey Athletic Park

The Whistler shootings of July 24, which resulted in the deaths of two men and the arrest of multiple individuals, shocked this community when two Surrey men were charged with first-degree murder in the double homicide. That incident was gang-related, police confirmed.

Social media was flooded with photos and videos around the same time, including one video posted to Twitter that showed one man lying on a sidewalk in a pool of blood next to a white BMW, and another nearby in the street.

One person died at the scene and a second succumbed to their injuries at the Whistler Medical Clinic soon afterwards.

READ MORE: Victims of gang-related daytime shooting in Whistler identified

READ MORE: Two Surrey men charged with murder in Whistler double homicide

A targeted shooting on Sept. 25 in Surrey left one seriously injured, another shooting (which police called an “isolated incident”) in South Surrey left one man dead on Aug. 27.

Among the most shocking attacks was the targeted shooting of Ripudaman Singh Malik, who was acquitted of the 1985 Air India bombing. He succumbed to his injuries on July 14 in Surrey.

READ MORE: Suspect still at large in Surrey shooting, with victim in hospital

READ MORE: Victim of fatal South Surrey shooting identified

READ MORE: Two men charged with first-degree murder in Ripudaman Singh Malik shooting in Surrey

In the courts

Former Surrey mayor Doug McCallum had not long left office before he went on trial for public mischief related to a September 2021 incident in the Southpoint Save On Foods. McCallum claimed that a driver connected to the Keep the RCMP in Surrey campaign had run over his foot. He was found not guilty in November. During the trial, his 911 recording was made public and testimony both supporting and challenging his account of events were shared.

READ MORE: Surrey woman testifies about ‘heated debate’ that led to Doug McCallum’s public mischief charge

READ MORE: Former Surrey mayor Doug McCallum found not guilty of public mischief

A conviction for the second-degree murder of Semiahmoo Peninsula mechanic Paul Prestbakmo saw two youths sentenced to life on Nov. 4. Evidence revealed that Prestbakmo, 45, was stabbed 42 times over the course of 26 seconds in a parking lot, after he had stepped out of his home in the early morning hours of Aug. 16, 2019 to take out the garbage and have a cigarette.

READ MORE: Life sentences for youths convicted in South Surrey slaying of Paul Prestbakmo

On March 3, a senior was sentenced for 15 months in court following a February 2020 killing in White Rock’s Five Corners district. Following the assault of a White Rock, which later led to the man’s death, Ross Banner’s charge of aggravated assault was upgraded to manslaughter and the 71-year-old was handed the 15-month sentence.

READ MORE: 15-month sentence for senior convicted in White Rock manslaughter case

Scams on the rise

What do cryptocurrency, romance and gift cards all have in common? Answer: They were all used as a ploy to separate unsuspecting individuals from their money in 2022.

This year in Surrey saw many scams — some successful, others less so — most targeted at seniors.

CARP’s White Rock-Surrey chapter noted an increase in cryptocurrency scams affecting older residents in the community, including some incidents that led to individuals investing their money into the digital currency, often under the direction of someone posing as a grandchild or a bank representative.

READ MORE: Cryptocurrency scams increasingly targeting South Surrey seniors

‘Sextortion’ was also on the rise in Surrey, with fraudsters luring men into sending sexual videos through social media or dating apps. Then the user, hiding behind a fake profile, would threaten to release the contents of the videos unless they were given a sum of cash.

READ MORE: ‘Sextortion’ scams targeting men online are on the rise, Surrey RCMP warn, and offer tips

Incidents of gift card scams rose around the country in time for the holidays, with a bit of a new twist this year.

Scammers place fake barcode stickers over the real ones on the backside of gift cards. The blank gift cards are taken from a store rack, tampered with and returned. When a customer purchases the card with the fake sticker-barcode, they are loading up the scammer’s card instead of their own.

READ MORE: Gift card scam catching B.C. holiday shoppers off guard

crimeSurreyWhite Rock