The ongoing Lower Mainland gang conflict is increasingly putting the public in danger as brazen killers move to target their rivals in public spaces during daytime hours.
In the past three weeks, seven men have been shot to death in locations including Vancouver International Airport, a park, a rec centre and outside stores and restaurants — a seeming departure from earlier gang-related murders that happened mostly at night and out of sight.
In April, Manny Mann, head of the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C., said elements of the increasing violence are related to a historic gang war that dates back 15 years between the Red Scorpions, Independent Soldiers and Wolf Pack versus the United Nations.
He also said new players on the gang landscape are contributing to the escalation in violence.
Below is a list of men and one boy who have been killed in the past five months. Police have either linked the homicides to gang warfare or have said the victim was targeted.
May 13 — Jaskeert Kalkat, 23
Shot to death at Market Crossing shopping complex at Byrne Road and Marine Way in south Burnaby, shortly after 8 p.m. Police say his killing is tied to the ongoing gang conflict and a young man and woman injured in the shooting were also tageted.Diners at a Cactus Club restaurant patio say they dove for cover when the shooting started.
May 9 — Karman Grewal, 28
Grewal was shot to death on the sidewalk outside the international departures terminal at Vancouver's airport around 3 p.m. Suspects in a getaway vehicle fired shots at police as they fled. They remain at large.
May 8 — Blerton (Toni) Dalipi, 19
Dalipi died in hospital after being shot in broad daylight as he left a vape store on Sixth Street in Burnaby. An innocent male bystander was hit by a stray bullet and suffered non-life threatening injuries. Ahmed Riyaz Tahir, 20, was charged with one count of first-degree murder. Tahir was previously charged with attempted murder in a 2019 shooting in New Westminster.
May 1 — Bikramdeep Randhawa, 29
The B.C. corrections officer was shot and killed in broad daylight in the busy parking lot of the Scottsdale Centre mall on the Surrey-Delta border. Bystander video caught the apparent killer running to a getaway car. Police believe Randhawa was targeted but say the motive is unclear.
April 22 — Todd Gouwenberg, 46
The United Nations gang associate and ex-MMA fighter was gunned down outside the front doors of the Langley Sportsplex around 9 a.m. The facility houses a daycare, four rinks and a fitness centre.
April 19 — Bailey McKinney, 20
Shot to death near a skateboard park at busy Coquitlam Town Centre Park around 6:30 p.m., IHIT said McKinney was in conflict with people or a group who were believed to have targeted him.
April 17 —Harpreet (Harb) Singh Dhaliwal, 31
The Abbotsford man was shot to death outside of Cardero's restaurant in Vancouver's Coal Harbour at 8:30 p.m. on a Saturday night in the first of a string of brazen daylight killings in public spaces. Francois Joseph Gauthier, 51, has since been charged with first-degree murder.
March 19 — Joban Dhindsa, 23, and Chaten Dhindsa, 25
The brothers were found dead inside a burning building in the 22000-block of Rathburn Drive in Richmond. Investigators said they had suffered injuries consistent with homicide and were likely targeted in the ongoing Lower Mainland gang conflict.
Feb. 3 — Chris Kenworthy, 32
Shot to death in his vehicle at 8 p.m. in the 6500-block of Portland Street in Burnaby in what police say was a targeted shooting. Kenworthy pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the 2006 killing of Surrey drug dealer Kee Woo and was sentenced to nine years in prison. Although 17 at the time of the murder, Kenworthy's case was raised to adult court.
Jan. 26 — Arshdeep Singh, 22
Shot dead in a vehicle in the 5300-block of 207 Street in Langley. A second man in the vehicle was also shot but survived. Singh was known to police and had ties to the drug trade.
Jan. 9 — Dilraj Johal, 28
Found shot to death in a condo unit at 8120 Lansdowne Road in Richmond, in what was the third gang-related killing in a four day span. Investigators said Johal was known to police and was targeted.
Jan. 7 — Anees Mohammed, 29
Shot several times in the area of Garry St. and Fentiman Place in the Steveston neighbourhood of Richmond. IHIT investigators linked his death to gangs and say he was targeted for murder.
Jan. 6 — Gary Kang, 24
Shot several times just after 5 a.m. at his home near 161 Street and 30th Avenue in the Morgan Heights neighbourhood of Surrey. Kang was well known to police who said his killing was connected to the ongoing Lower Mainland gang war.
Dec. 28, 2020 — Tequel Willis, 14
The Burnaby teen is the youngest victim of the ongoing violence. He was shot multiple times while getting out of a taxi near 148A Street and 110 Avenue in Surrey at 7:30 in the evening. Police say he was targeted.
Dec. 27, 2020 — Harman Singh Dhesi, 19
Shot to death in his vehicle in the area of 137A Street and 90th Avenue in Surrey at 10:30 p.m. Dhesi was known to police, who say he was targeted for murder.