William Andrew Whiteside, 22, of Surrey was charged Friday with second-degree murder in the Christmas Day slaying of an Indian man at a corner store in Surrey.

Alok Gupta, 28, was working a shift at Ken’s Grocery in Surrey so the store’s owner could celebrate this past Christmas with his family, when he was shot during what police believe was a robbery turned deadly.

“Mr. Gupta was simply at the wrong place at the wrong time,” said Insp. Kevin Hackett, officer in charge of the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team. “Investigators believe this was a robbery turned deadly.”

“I’m confident and hopeful we will have additional arrests,” Hackett said.

Gupta had been in Canada on a student visa and was studying marketing and business management at Kwantlen Polytechnic in Surrey.

After he was shot, Gupta crawled to a nearby home for help and was rushed to hospital, where he died. The shooting happened late in the afternoon, in the 117000-block of 96th Avenue in Royal Heights.
“We did rely on video surveillance in this case,” he said.

Police were in contact with Gupta’s family in India during the investigation.