A man acquitted of murder in 2002 is dead after being gunned down on his doorstep in a targeted shooting early Saturday morning.

Maple Ridge RCMP responded to reports of shots fired in the area of 243 Street and 102 Avenue just after 2 a.m.

A 32-year-old man with gunshot wounds was rushed to hospital, but later died.

IHIT has taken over the investigation, and says the shooting appears targeted.

The identity of the victim has not yet been released by police, but neighbours identified him as Jonathen Patko.

A court judgment shows that Patko and a younger man were accused of entering Pickton trial witness Gina Houston's house in Surrey armed with baseball bats to beat another man to death. One witness didn't show up to court.

Since then, court records show only driving offenses and an ICBC dispute over who was at fault for a late-night crash, Patko or his uncle.

On Saturday, friends on Facebook expressed condolences to Patko.

“RIP Patko, you were taken too soon, you always have a special place in my heart,” posted one woman.

Witnesses were rattled by a murder in what they say is a safe neighbourhood.

“We thought we heard fireworks, but they ended up being gunshots,” said Chase Mahaffey, noting that he and his friend Jeremy Hutchison went to investigate the noise and stumbled upon the crime scene.

“It feels horrible, I really don’t feel comfortable around this neighbourhood anymore. It’s really scary to me.”

"We're all shocked. Everybody," said Desiree Uriart. "We have kids here, and almost all of our kids have bedrooms facing the road. We're scared of stray bullets hitting our kids."

Another witness speaking to CTV News reported hearing an argument and several gunshots before a dark coloured car fled the scene. A woman was also heard screaming between gunshots.

Anyone with information regarding this investigation to contact the IHIT tip line at 1-877-551-4448 (IHIT).

With files from CTV Vancouver’s Jon Woodward