SURREY RCMP officers responded to an altercation at a strip mall in Surrey just before 1 a.m. on January 2 and found a dead male lying in the parking lot. A witness to the altercation followed the suspect from a safe distance as he fled, and directed police to his location a few blocks away. Officers quickly arrested him and located a weapon possibly used in the murder.
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) was called in to investigate, and worked closely with the Surrey RCMP, the witnesses to the altercation, and the various business owners in the area. Late on Thursday night, a charge of second-degree murder was approved against 33-year-old Michael James Petronio.
“This success was a combined effort between the people who witnessed the altercation, the Lower Mainland Forensic Identification Services, the Surrey RCMP, and IHIT,” said IHIT Constable Harrison Mohr on Friday. “This could not have been accomplished without the cooperation of the witnesses, the expertise of the forensic specialists, and the professionalism demonstrated by Surrey RCMP officers. We would also like to thank the business owners and community members in the area, who provided us with key surveillance video footage, and waited patiently while the mall was closed during our initial investigation. This was a prime example of the success that can happen when police and the community work together.”
In order to further the investigation, IHIT is now confirming that the victim has been identified as 39-year-old Jason Stanley Wells.
“Our attention must turn now to the victim, his family, and his friends and associates,” said Mohr. “Our thoughts are with those who knew him, and we are asking them to come forward and talk to us. Our investigators would like to speak with anyone whom had been in recent contact with Jason.
Anyone who knew Jason can call the IHIT information line at 1-877-551- IHIT (4448), or email [email protected]