Gang-related shooting in Canada’s Whistler Village leaves two dead

Gang-related shooting in Canada's Whistler Village leaves two dead
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Two people were killed after a brazen daylight shooting Sunday that rocked the Canadian mountain resort town of Whistler, BC

Police responded to gunfire near the Sundial Hotel shortly after noon. One person died at the scene and another succumbed to injuries at the Whistler Medical Clinic, the Whistler Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) said in a statement.

Police later said the shooting appeared to be gang-related. They named the victims as Satindera Gill and Meninder Dhaliwal. Dhaliwal’s brother was killed in a targeted attack last year in Vancouver, BC, according to local media. reports. Both victims in the Whistler shooting were known to police, according to homicide investigators.

“We believe this is a targeted incident” in connection with an ongoing gang conflict, said Sgt. Timothy Pierotti of the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team.

“Although this was a brazen daytime shooting in a busy village, no further risk to the public is believed to be involved, thanks to the quick response by members of the Sea-to-Sky RCMP,” it added.

Multiple arrests were made and a burning vehicle believed to be associated with the shooting was found nearby, a hallmark of local gang shootings, police said.

Gruesome videos circulating on social media show two men lying face down outside the hotel in a pool of blood.

Sunday’s shooting shocked the tight-knit resort community. People scrambled for cover as reports of gunshots spread through the village.

The resort’s operator, Whistler Blackcomb, said in a statement on Twitter that it was closing for the day “out of respect for all those affected.” The elevators remained open while all the remaining guests were lowered from the mountain.

“We are shocked and deeply saddened by this senseless act of violence, and we stand with our community,” the resort operator said.

Canada vows to ‘freeze’ firearms sales and buy back assault weapons

Fatal shootings are rare in Canada compared to the United States, although they have increased in recent years, from 134 in 2013 to 277 in 2020, according to Canada Statistics. The percentage of firearm homicides jumped from 26 to 37 percent in that period. The majority of gang firearm-related homicides in 2020 (63 percent) were committed with a gun.

Canada introduced new gun control legislation in may which, if passed, would implement a “national freeze” on the purchase, import, transfer and sale of firearms, effectively limiting the number of such weapons already in the country.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau noted at the time that gun violence has worsened in recent years. The nation “needs only to look south of the border to know that if we don’t take action, firmly and quickly, it will get worse and harder to counter,” he said after mass shootings in Texas and across the United States. .-Canada border in Buffalo.

Amanda Coletta in Alberta, Canada, contributed to this report.

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