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'No reason' to believe latest Vancouver shooting gang-related, police say

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Authorities have found "no reason" to believe a shooting that injured a 46-year-old man in downtown Vancouver on Wednesday night is related to gangs.

Police found the victim after responding to reports of gunfire near Homer and West Pender streets around 7:50 p.m., and he was taken to hospital with injuries described as serious but not life-threatening.

The incident marked the second shooting in the city's downtown core in five days – but the Vancouver Police Department said Thursday that there is nothing linking the two incidents to one another.

"There is no reason to believe this incident is related to the B.C. gang conflict, nor is it connected to any other serious investigations going on in the city," Const. Tania Visintin said in a statement.

The previous shooting took place in broad daylight Saturday near Robson and Richards streets, where surveillance video captured two gunmen opening fire on a black vehicle at close range.

Police quickly suggested that incident was targeted, and said they were bracing for a potential "retaliatory incident" in the near future, following the pattern of similar gang violence in the region.

Authorities have not provided any further information on what happened Wednesday, or why they do not believe it is connected to the previous shooting. Visintin said investigators are still working to confirm "what transpired between the suspect and the victim."

No suspects have been arrested in connection with either shooting.

No humans were injured during the shooting last weekend, but police said two dogs that were inside the vehicle were injured.

The incident shocked bystanders in the downtown core, and sent some running for safety. An apparent bullet hole was seen in the window of a nearby Tim Hortons restaurant in the aftermath.

Speaking to reporters on Sunday, Sgt. Steve Addison said it was a "miracle that nobody was killed."

Anyone with information on either shooting is asked to call the Vancouver Police Department's Major Crime Section at 604-717-2541.

With files from CTV News Vancouver's Penny Daflos and Kaija Jussinoja

 

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