Suspect arrested in 2016 hit-and-run that killed skateboarder
Nearly three years after the hit-and-run that killed skateboarder Ryan Barron, Vancouver police have secured charges against a suspect.
The 30-year-old victim was skateboarding with a friend down Heather Street near West 54th Avenue in the early morning hours of April 17, 2016 when he was struck by a vehicle.
The driver left the scene, and Barron later died of his injuries in hospital.
On Friday, almost 32 months after the crash, the Vancouver Police Department announced counts of failure to stop at an accident causing bodily harm and dangerous driving causing death have been approved against 23-year-old Amanpreet Sohal.
“Our job is to work on behalf of Ryan and his family to ensure the person responsible for his death is held accountable for their actions,” Const. Jason Doucette said.
“Our collision investigators worked tirelessly on this complex, lengthy and difficult investigation, and we are pleased charges have been laid."
Authorities found a damaged vehicle they believed was involved in the crash at a home in East Vancouver days after the collision, and seized it for examination.
"They had the vehicle, they had the crime, and they took all that information and pulled back the layers until they could identify the driver," Doucette said.
It's unclear why the investigation took so long to complete after the seizure, and police said they could not share any more information while the case is before the courts.
Barron's family and friends are hopeful the arrest means they'll finally get justice.
"I don't understand how someone can do that and know they did it and try to get away with it," Dallas Ives told CTV News Friday.
"He was my best friend, knew him since I was seven years old. We had like 20 years of friendship… I'll forever live on his legacy."
Barron's father, Terry, also spoke to reporters after learning of the arrest, saying, "It's not going to bring my son back, and it doesn't lessen the loss really. It provides some comfort."
He said he'll now be planning a trip from his hometown of Windsor, Ont., where there's a plaque honouring Barron at his favourite childhood skate park.
"I'm definitely planning on travelling to Vancouver, whether it's for an arraignment or whether it's for trial," he said.
Barron has been described by friends as a musician and hardworking warehouse employee who had recently been promoted to supervisor before his life was cut short.
With a report from CTV Vancouver's Shannon Paterson