Eleven of 19 shootings in Surrey and Delta since March 9 blamed on turf fight between low-level South Asian and Somali drug groups (PHOTOS & TIMELINE ADDED)

Surrey RCMP Chief Superintendent Bill Fordy Photo by Jay Sharma of Mahi Photo Studio
Surrey RCMP Chief Superintendent Bill Fordy
Photo by Jay Sharma of Mahi Photo Studio

Community must cooperative with police to end senseless violence

 

BY RATTAN MALL

 

SURREY RCMP Chief Superintendent Bill Fordy on Tuesday said that 11 of the 19 shootings in Surrey and Delta since March 9 are related to two groups – one South Asian and the other Somali – who are involved in low-level drug trafficking.

Fordy said: “We believe these two groups are competing over turf and have chosen to jeopardize public safety in that process.”

Fordy said he wanted to provide the update on the recent shootings because he knows “our citizens and business owners are very concerned.”

Surrey has had 16 shootings and Delta has had three.

Fordy said: “This type of violence is completely unacceptable. Since the very first shooting, the Surrey RCMP has been working diligently with our law enforcement partners in Delta, the RCMP Lower Mainland District and the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit.”

He said that over the past five weeks police have used numerous tactics, including overt and covert enforcement initiatives and community engagement, to gather intelligence and evidence on those they believe are involved in these targeted shootings.

Fordy added: “We have reached out to elders and leaders in both the Somali and Sikh communities. We also have two police officers who are involved in a Sikh youth leadership pilot program at our local temples. In addition, we have spoken to many of the family members of those involved in these shootings.”

 

FORDY said that as a result of information police had shared at their press conference of March 12:

* They have received many tips directly to their office and via CrimeStoppers that have allowed them to identify several previously unknown persons associated to both groups.

* They have identified and recovered one of the vehicles suspected to have been used in one of the shootings.

* They have made one arrest. Delta resident Arman Dhatt was arrested Friday and has been charged with 12 firearms and drug trafficking offences. Their investigative efforts are continuing in regards to his possible involvement in the shootings.

But Fordy pointed out that the victims and intended victims of these shootings have been uncooperative with police.  Upon questioning, these young men have said things such as:

* “The bullets fell from the sky.”

* “I will take care of it myself.”

* “Don’t you worry about it … No need for you cops to be here.”

And one of the victims also told investigators that he knew who the shooters were and the motive behind the shooting but did not wish to tell police.

Fordy noted: “As you can imagine, this lack of cooperation has significantly impacted our ability to make any arrests.”

He added: “While both the victims and suspects in these cases are determined to settle their differences outside the law, we are determined to stop the violence.  We are disappointed with the lack of cooperation from the victims and we know the community is frustrated as well.”

Fordy once again appealed “to the family, friends and those of you who know any of the people pictured here.” He added: “We need information on their whereabouts, their connections, and their activities. Any information could benefit the investigations and help prevent somebody else being shot.”

 

HEADLINES shooting victims_1FORDY said that since the Surrey RCMP’s March 12 press conference, their investigators have identified eight additional males who have been victims or intended victims in these shootings and have not been forthcoming with information on the incidents that threatened their lives.

To further their investigative efforts he released their identities as follows:

  1. Adam Lakatos (Surrey resident)
  2. Derrick Bequette (Surrey resident)
  3. Chadanjot Gill (Surrey resident)
  4. Shakiel Basra (Delta resident)
  5. Sukhpreet Pansal (Delta resident)
  6. Sukhraj Chahal (Surrey resident)
  7. Tirath Taggar (Surrey resident)
  8. Charandeep Tiwana (Surrey resident)

HEADLINES shooting victims_2Police also continue to seek additional information about the five individuals they presented to the public on March 12:

  1. Sameh Mohammed (Surrey resident)
  2. Pardip Brar (Delta resident)
  3. Amrit Kular (Surrey resident)
  4. Indervir Johal (Surrey resident)
  5. Pardeep Singh (Surrey resident)

Police are asking anyone with information on any of the shootings or on the activities of any of these 13 people to contact the Surrey RCMP, Delta Police, or CrimeStoppers if you wish to remain anonymous.

Fordy said: “To the citizens of Surrey and Delta, I assure you that our work on these egregious acts continues every day, 24/7.  Thank you for your trust, and for your assistance.”

 

DELTA Police’s Acting Chief Constable Lyle Beaudoin said: “While Delta Police believe that the incidents occurring in Delta are targeted against specific individuals, the brazen nature of the shootings in residential and other public locations where members of the community should feel safe is hugely concerning and our utmost priority.

“Delta Police continue to vigorously investigate these shootings in an attempt to locate and prosecute those responsible.  Our dedicated investigative teams are in regular contact with our partner agencies including the Surrey RCMP, IHIT, the Combined Special Enforcement Unit and the Real Time Intelligence Centre.”

In a press release, Delta Police said: “In response to the shootings and in addition to the ongoing investigations, the Delta Police are taking numerous other steps to ensure the ongoing safety and security of our community.”

Some of those steps include:

* Increased police patrols, particularly throughout the affected areas;

* A High-Risk Youth Initiative to connect with at-risk youth and their families to ensure support, referrals, and ongoing monitoring and accountability to those who may be attracted to a violent/gang lifestyle;

* A Sikh Youth Leadership gang violence initiative;

* Ongoing chronic / known offender monitoring including curfew and compliance checks;

* Expansion of the Inadmissible Persons Program at local establishments targeting those with known criminal or violent histories and associations.

Delta Police want to remind the public to report ANY suspicious or criminal activity to police; in Delta, those reports can be made by calling 911 for any emergency or in progress crime, or 604.946.4411 for any non-emergency report.

Those who wish to remain anonymous can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS(8477) or by leaving a secure online tip through the Crime Stoppers website at http://www.bccrimestoppers.com/links.php

 

MARCH SHOOTINGS:

* March 9 at 9:27 p.m.: Surrey RCMP were advised that a male had been dropped off at a local hospital suffering of gunshot injuries.  Police attended the hospital and obtained the victims details but were unable to identify the origin of the man’s injuries. The 20-year-old man was treated and released from hospital.

 

* March 10 at 6:42 p.m.: Four males were driving in a Cadillac CTS near 127 Street and 78 Avenue when they were shot at by the occupants of two vehicles, believed to be a black Acura TL and a Volkswagen Passat or Jetta.  One of the males was shot in the neck and transported to the Surrey Memorial Hospital.  None of the parties involved were cooperative with the police.

 

* March 10 at 11:09 p.m.: Multiple complainants reported a truck shooting at a black Acura near 128 Street and 76 Avenue.  Both vehicles fled though casings were recovered at scene.  There were no reports of anyone attending local area hospitals with gunshot wounds.

 

* March 11 at 1:31 p.m.: A male was driving in his black Acura near 132 Street and 80 Avenue when he was shot at multiple times by the occupant(s) of a white SUV.  The male fled the scene in his vehicle and drove to an apartment complex located at on 102A Avenue.  Members of the Surrey RCMP Drug Unit located the black Acura which had sustained damage as a result of the shooting. The vehicle was seized for forensic examination.  The male was located uninjured nearby and refused to cooperate with the police.

 

* March 11 at 11:50 p.m.: Surrey RCMP responded to a call regarding a male with a gunshot injury in the area of 193 Street and 80 Avenue.  That male was transported to hospital to be treated for his injuries.  The male was identified as a 28-year-old Langley man.  It has not been determined as to where that shooting took place.  This incident appears to be drug-related and targeted.

 

* March 12 at 3:30 a.m., Surrey RCMP responded to a report of shots fired at a residence in the area of 94 Avenue and 126 Street.  Once police arrived, all parties had departed. There have been no reports of injuries related to this shooting. Police have recovered evidence related to shots being fired from the area.

 

* March 26 at 8:40 p.m.: A male was stopped for a red light at Mall Access Road (12500 block) of 88 Avenue when a black SUV pulled alongside and shot into his vehicle.  The male was struck in the left hip and the passenger was struck in the left wrist and thigh.  Both drove to hospital for treatment and refused to cooperate with police.

 

* March 27 at 11:02 p.m. (in Delta): Multiple witnesses reported a four-door sedan fired five to seven shots into a residence then fled.  Shell casings located in the front yard.  Occupants in the residence at the time were not struck.

 

* March 28 at 8:38 p.m.: Multiple 911 calls of shots fired in the 9400 block of 125 Street, two vehicles observed fleeing.  Police located the victim vehicle near 93 Avenue and 125 Street damaged by gunfire.  A male was located at a local area hospital and treated for a gunshot wounds to his upper and lower arm.  The male refused to cooperate with the investigation.

 

APRIL SHOOTINGS

 

* April 1 at 11:40 a.m.: 911 calls reported a black Honda was pursuing and firing shots into a Buick Regal southbound on 128 Street through 64 Avenue.  Delta Police located Buick Regal with bullet holes and arrested a male on scene.  The male was released and refused to cooperate with investigation. Shell casings recovered.

 

* April 5 at 5:47 p.m.(in Delta) : 911 calls report seven gunshots fired in rapid succession toward in the 11400 block of 79 Avenue, Delta, however no point of impact was located.  Witnesses observed a silver four-door sedan with two South Asian occupants, one was seated in the rear had an arm out the window.  Shell casings seized at scene and are pending a forensic examination by Delta Police.

 

* April 5 at 8:56 p.m. (in Delta): 911 caller reported five shots were fired into a residence, one bullet passed through residence and struck neighbour’s vehicle to the north.  A grey vehicle was observed fleeing the scene, no shell casings were located.

 

* April 8 at 4:48 a.m.: Surrey RCMP responded to a compliant of shots fired in the 6800 block of 128 Street.  A male was identified as a driver for a dial-a-dope drug dealer when he was followed away from a drug deal.  The suspect vehicle began shooting at him from behind.  The male drove to a local hospital and was treated for one gunshot wound to his back.  The male was arrested on an outstanding warrant and provided very limited cooperation.

 

* April 10 at 5:05 a.m.: Surrey RCMP responded to a complaint of shots fired in the 11700 block of 96 Avenue.  Shots were fired into a residence with people within the house.  No one was injured and shell casings were found outside the residence.

 

* April 11 at 7:15 p.m.: Two males were driving in a vehicle when they were approached by a Nissan Altima in the area of 128 Street and 60 Avenue.  None of the males were injured.  Bullet casings were seized from the scene.  The suspect vehicle has been seized by police.

 

* April 12 at 4:47 p.m.: Police were in the area, 130 Street and 70 Avenue, for an unrelated investigation when shots were heard.  Police located a male with an injury to his leg, his friend and a vehicle with bullet holes. The male was taken to hospital. There has been no cooperation from these males.

 

* April 12 at 8:54 p.m.: Surrey RCMP responded to a report of shots fired in the area of 137 Street and 88 Avenue.  Two males were observed walking down the street getting into a vehicle.  Police responded and located a vehicle with bullet holes.

 

* April 13 at 1:57 a.m.: A grey four-door sedan and a grey Dodge Ram were in the area 77 Avenue and 146A Street when the occupants of the sedan fired four to five shots at the truck.  The vehicle was located with bullet holes.

 

* April 13 at 10:30 p.m.: Surrey RCMP responded to a report of shots fired and a collision in the area of 148 Street and 69 Avenue.  The driver of the vehicle that collided with a parked car took off from the area and was seen carrying a gun.  The vehicle and bullet exhibits were seized from the scene.  No one is cooperating with police.

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