Fatal Abbotsford shooting connected to ongoing gang conflict: IHIT
A 19-year-old student has died despite the efforts of an off-duty nurse who saw the injured man lying in a pool of blood and tried to save his life.
The nurse was driving through the intersection of Ross and Simpson Roads in Abbotsford at about 3:30 p.m. Monday when he noticed the victim on the ground. Richard Tarenta told CTV News his first thought was to help.
He pulled over and began CPR, continuing the effort to save the man's life until paramedics reached the scene. Tarenta did everything he could to keep the man alive, but said the victim had been shot in the back and the head.
"I've seen plenty but nothing like this. My first gunshot situation, especially out in the 'real world,' so to speak," Tarenta said.
"When you see a gunshot wound to the head, it's kind of hard to imagine a positive outcome after that."
Paramedics took over, working on the man for some time as a group of distraught people who may have known the victim looked on. He was rushed to hospital in an air ambulance, but died a short time later.
Police remained at the scene most of the night, focusing part of their investigation on a white vehicle near the intersection where the victim was found.
Officials have not provided the victim's identity, but Indo-Canadian media have identified him as Jagvir Malhi, a student at the University of the Fraser Valley.
A UFV spokesperson expressed condolences, and said counselling would be offered at the school.
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team has taken the lead on the investigation.
"This shooting occurred near a public school, a blatant disregard for the safety of the community," IHIT Cpl. David Lee said in a statement Tuesday.
"We are fortunate that school was not in session at the time."
Lee said investigators believe the shooting was not random, and is connected to the ongoing gang conflict in B.C.'s Lower Mainland. They did not say whether they believe it is tied to any specific shootings in the area recently, including a drive-by in Surrey that happened just hours before the 19-year-old was shot.
Anyone with more information or with video of the area is asked to contact IHIT or Crime Stoppers.
With files from CTV Vancouver's Penny Daflos, Ben Miljure and Allison Hurst