RCMP officers search around rows of luggage carts as screens block off an area of the sidewalk after a shooting outside the international departures terminal at Vancouver International Airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

RCMP officers search around rows of luggage carts as screens block off an area of the sidewalk after a shooting outside the international departures terminal at Vancouver International Airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Police say gang conflict in Metro Vancouver may be behind shooting death at airport

Police said this generation of gangsters is taking things to new level and have no regard for community safety

The death of a 28-year-old man outside the departure terminal at Vancouver International Airport is believed to be linked to the ongoing gang conflict that has gripped British Columbia’s Lower Mainland, police say.

Sgt. Frank Jang of the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team said the victim is known to police and the shooting needs to stop.

“I think we’re all tired of seeing the violence that is taking place on our streets,” Jang said during a late news conference Sunday.

An SUV with at least two people inside was seen leaving the scene.

A short time later, fire crews in Surrey were called to attend a vehicle fire in a back alley, about 28 kilometres from the airport. Several targeted shootings have ended with similar vehicle fires.

Richmond RCMP Chief Supt. Will Ng said the shooting took place about 3 p.m. on Sunday and shortly afterwards one of their officers caught up with the suspect vehicle.

Someone from the vehicle fired their weapon while driving down a busy street, hitting the police cruiser, Ng said.

The officer didn’t return fire and stopped the pursuit, he said.

READ MORE: Man killed in brazen daylight shooting at Vancouver airport

There’s been a string of shootings resulting in murders and injuries in Metro Vancouver over the last few weeks, taking place near shopping centres, restaurants and busy streets.

Jang said a shooting in a public place is a matter of great concern.

“We know all too well that bullets do not discriminate,” he said.

“They could land on an unsuspecting person, a member of the public. Enough is enough.”

The murder of a prison corrections officer in the parking lot of a busy Delta, B.C., shopping mall had all the hallmarks of a gang hit, police said last week.

READ MORE: Man killed in North Delta shooting identified as BC Corrections officer

Ng said this newest generation of gangers is taking things to another level and have no regard for community safety.

“They will stop at nothing to target rivals, even if it’s at an international airport in broad daylight on Mother’s Day, and putting everyone at risk, including shooting at a police officer, which indicates to me these people have no care whatsoever.”

Because gangers are taking it to the next level, Ng said police will do the same.

“Next level strategies are a very intentional and strategic response, targeting individuals involved in the Lower Mainland gang conflict, and specifically targeting them with a collaborative approach with all of our law enforcement agencies, partners,” he said.

Jang said it is clear that the message isn’t getting through to these people.

“Please don’t kill one another, stop the violence. Apparently it’s falling on deaf ears to some, and they continue to harm one another, they continue to shoot their guns, putting all of us in jeopardy.”

Jang said police are looking for dashcam video from those who were in the area Sunday between the airport and the location where the vehicle was found on fire to help with their investigation.

Delta’s police chief said last week that all police departments in B.C.’s Lower Mainland were working on the shootings.

Neil Dubord acknowledged the “anxiety” around the very public shootings, saying they showed a “shocking” disregard for public safety.

On Sunday evening, yellow evidence markers peppered the area where the shooting took place. A tall, white screen remained in front of an entrance to the terminal, shielding the crime scene.

Red and yellow police tape surrounded the scene, both inside the terminal and outside where passengers would normally be dropped off to catch their flights.

The Vancouver airport Authority said in a statement that the airport was open and safe for airport workers and those who need to travel.

“Our thoughts are with those impacted by (Sunday’s) incident.”

It said the safety and security of its employees, community and passengers remains its priority and it is fully co-operating with RCMP to support the investigation.

Federal Public Safety Minister Bill Blair said in a statement on Twitter that the shooting was disturbing news.

“My thoughts are with the communities in the Lower Mainland who have been impacted by gun and gang violence far too often, particularly over the last week,” Blair said.

Hina Alam, The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CrimeRCMP

Just Posted

A for sale sign is shown in by new homes in Beckwith, Ont., just outside Ottawa, on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Thompson-Okanagan population grew despite COVID-19: report

The Chartered Professional Accountants of BC said there are 8,462 new residents in the region

A fawn found in Invermere. (BC Conservation Officer Service photo)
WildSafeBC advises on fawning season

It’s best to leave fawns alone, according to WildSafeBC

On Tuesday June 8th, B.C. Fire in Invermere responded to a fire at the 9500 area of Hwy 95 south of Parson. (Photo submitted)
Parson fire reminder of wildfire season ahead

While the fire was quickly extinguished, it’s a reminder that open fires are currently prohibited

The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League met for their AGM and announced a number of new initiatives, new awards and changes in their executive committee, as well as the starting date for the 2021-22 season. Paul Rodgers file.
KIJHL announces start dates for 2021-22 season

Season set to begin Oct. 1 with league still following all health guidelines

Some of the priorities that the GDCF is hoping to touch on in their surveys that will inform community priorities. (GDCF photo)
Golden Community Foundation encouraging residents to participate in survey

It’s a new project to inform community priorities in the coming year

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

(Facebook)
New trial date set for Penticton beach attacker’s triple assault charges

May trial was delayed after Crown witnesses failed to show up

Orange ribbons are tied to the fence outside Vernon’s Gateway Homeless Shelter on 33rd Street. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
POLL: Low-key Canada Day in the works for Vernon

Councillor calling for Indigenous recognition for 2022

A conceptual design of Vernon’s new Active Living Centre, which will go to referendum Oct. 15, 2022. (Rendering)
Active living centre 2022 referendum planned in Vernon

City hoping to get Coldstream and Areas B and C back on board

Closure of the 2900 block of 30th Avenue will allow restaurants and other businesses to extend their patios onto the street. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Green light given to downtown Vernon road closure

Single block of 30th Avenue to close over summer months to boost business

Graduating Grade 12 student Savannah Lamb has been awarded an approximate $40,000 scholarship from the Beedie Luminaries foundation. (Contributed)
Dedicated Salmon Arm student earns scholarship to pursue post-secondary education

Savannah Lamb is graduating from Salmon Arm Secondary with a $40,000 scholarship

A provided photo of the suspect. (Kelowna RCMP/Contributed)
Kelowna RCMP investigating after business robbed

An undisclosed amount of money and merchandise were taken from the business

Travel Penticton went to city council for support in increasing the tax on short-term stays to fund a convention bureau and affordable housing. (File photo)
Travel Penticton seeks to grow through increased hotel tax

The increased funds would go to creating a convention bureau and to affordable housing

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

Most Read