Surrey mob violence focus of police investigation

Viral video prompts expanded RCMP investigation

A video circulating on social media of a violent mob traversing Surrey streets has prompted a police investigation, Mounties confirmed in a statement Friday.

It also prompted a statement from the city’s mayor.

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“The investigation began shortly before 2:30 a.m. on November 11, 2019, when Surrey RCMP received two reports related to an assault with a weapon and vandalism to property in the parking lot of a business near 70 Avenue and 128 Street, in Newton,” according to the RCMP.

The video was posted on social media on Thursday, resulting in an “expanded” investigation, police said.

It appears a group of about a dozen young men were involved in a violent altercation at night involving sticks, golf clubs or other weapons. The groups were yelling at one another in Punjabi and some appeared to flee the scene in vehicles while one vehicle was smashed. At one point a person is beaten with the weapons. Another young man, who was unable to flee in his vehicle, had his turban knocked off in the altercation.

“While this incident and video is disturbing, having such a wide distribution could potentially help police further our investigation and identify those involved,” said Cpl. Elenore Sturko, Surrey RCMP media relations officer. “We share the community’s concerns about this act of public violence and urge anyone with information to come forward.”

Mayor Doug McCallum also released a statement indicating “deep” concern given a similar incident occurred in the Strawberry Hill area in August.

“This behavior is repugnant and puts the public at risk. It is imperative that RCMP take immediate and strong action to get a handle on this kind of mob violence that is occurring far too frequently in Surrey,” said McCallum.

The mayor voted against adding more police officers to the city in last year’s budget. He is hoping the provincial government expedites a planned transition to a municipal police force by April 2021.

Police are asking anyone with information or who may know those involved to contact the Surrey RCMP at 604-599-0502 or Crime Stoppers to remain anonymous at 1-800-222-TIPS orwww.solvecrime.ca.

gwood@glaciermedia.ca

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