Homes hit by gunmen's errant gunfire

Richmond RCMP investigators were looking for more bullet holes at this residential complex on Alderbridge Way Wednesday morning. - Martin van den Hemel photo
Richmond RCMP investigators were looking for more bullet holes at this residential complex on Alderbridge Way Wednesday morning.
— image credit: Martin van den Hemel photo

Much like the 2007 Dover Park shootout, Tuesday night's shooting in downtown Richmond left stray bullets lodged in the homes of area residents, police are now saying.

But fortunately, there were no injuries.

Two masked gunmen ignored the risk to innocent bystanders, firing multiple shots as they chased a man on foot in a residential area of downtown Richmond Tuesday around 9 p.m.

Now Richmond Mounties and the Vancouver Police are searching for a red van in which the shooters are believed to have fled the scene, north of Alderbridge Way and Westminster Highway, near The Foggy Dew pub.

The uninjured victim, who is known to police, is being uncooperative with police investigators who are saying the shooting was not random and definitely targeted.

RCMP Insp. Janis Gray said the Richmond detachment is making Tuesday's incident their number one priority.

Police were still on the scene Wednesday morning, looking for slugs that may have lodged into the surrounding buildings, including a bank of street-front townhouses.

Gray said police have already recovered one bullet that went into a neighbouring building but was not a residence.

At least one vehicle, a BMW convertible coupe, was also struck.

Witnesses who haven't already spoken to police are urged to come forward, she said. Even seemingly insignificant pieces of information may be what police need to find those responsible.

What's described as a red van was last seen in an alley off Alderbridge Way, heading west.

Gray wouldn't say if the target of Tuesday's shooting has gang or drug affiliations.

Asked what people can do to protect themselves, Gray said residents need to be observant of their surroundings and take notice of things that are out of place.

If they spot something like Tuesday's incident in progress, they shouldn't engage with the suspects, but instead should take mental notes of what they observe and then report it immediately to police.

Although shootings like this have the potential to affect innocent bystanders, Gray said there's nothing for the general public to fear.

There were reportedly as many as 10 shots were fired.

"Some guys were chasing a guy in an suv and shooting at him," a local wrote on a Facebook page. "It was quite the scene."

Richmond RCMP are encouraging any witnesses to please contact Cpl. Ellis at (604)278-1212, or if you wish to remain anonymous please call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

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