A man well-known to police is dead after a shooting at a busy McDonald's in a quiet Fraser Valley community around dinnertime on Tuesday.
Children and their parents were inside the restaurant in the Gloucester area of Aldergrove when bullets sprayed the building around 8 p.m. PT. The intended victim, a man in his 30s, was hit multiple times outside the front door and died on scene.
The building was extensively damaged with at least one window shattered, but homicide investigators said no bystanders were hurt. The RCMP's Integrated Homicide Investigation Team said the victim had ties to gang activity and it's believed his death was targeted.
"For this to happen, it is unacceptable. It shows the brazenness, the recklessness," said IHIT Cpl. Frank Jang said told reporters Wednesday.
"I'm sure these people — they don't give a damn about our safety, yours or mine. And that's concerning to us," the officer said of the shooters who fired at a restaurant filled with families.
"We're doing our absolute best to find these people and bring them in."
Investigators also confirmed Wednesday that a black SUV found on fire several kilometres away from the restaurant is believed to be linked to the shooting. The torched vehicle was discovered in the 27900 block of Montesina Avenue about half an hour after the killing.
The McDonald's, on 56 Avenue near 264 Street, is in an industrial area of Aldergrove off Highway 1. Montesina Avenue is a short side-street in a farming area of Abbotsford.
The SUV has been seized for forensic analysis. Cpl. Jang said RCMP are looking for witnesses to the shooting — of which, he said, there are many — as well as anyone who has dashcam footage from either area Tuesday night.
Jang said investigators have already obtained at least one video of the shooting. The officer said the footage illustrates just how many members of the public were in danger of being shot.
"The video is quite dramatic ... That is traumatizing to me, and I've seen quite a few of these things, unfortunately," Jang said. "The fact [bullets] didn't strike a child, a mom, or a dad, we have to be incredibly grateful."
Jang said the victim has been identified, but his name is not being released as his family is out of the country and has not been notified of his death. The officer said the man lived in the Lower Mainland, though exactly where is not known.
Anyone with information about the shooting or burning SUV is asked to call the IHIT Information Line at 1-877-551-4448 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Those who wish to remain anonymous are asked to call Crimestoppers.