British Columbia

Police identify White Rock mother killed in Surrey shooting

RCMP have identified the woman shot dead while driving through a Surrey, B.C., intersection on Monday morning.
Nicole Alemy was shot while driving her husband's Cadillac through a Surrey intersection on Monday morning, say police. ((Facebook))

RCMP have identified the woman shot dead while driving through a Surrey, B.C., intersection on Monday morning.

Nicole Marie Alemy, 23, of White Rock was shot at the wheel of her husband's Cadillac, Cpl. Dale Carr of the RCMP said Tuesday.

Carr also confirmed Alemy was the mother of a four-year-old boy in the back seat of the car, but he survived the shooting.

Police have not identified Alemy's husband, but CBC has learned he is Koshan Alemy.

Koshan Alemy was arrested with another man in Coquitlam in 2007 and charged with numerous firearms offences, including possession of a restricted weapon and possession of a weapon with an altered serial number.

The charges were later dropped, and there is no indication that the shooting death of Nicole Alemy and her husband's arrest were related.

The child is currently in the care of the provincial Ministry of Children and Family Development, said Carr.

Police understand public's frustration

Alemy's death was the second daylight shooting in Surrey's Guildford neighbourhood in as many weeks and the 11th shooting in 15 days in the Lower Mainland.

Police say Alemy's vehicle was shot 20 times, but her four-year-old son in the backseat survived. ((CBC))

When asked whether the killing had any ties to gangs in the Lower Mainland, Carr responded that investigators aren't ruling out any scenario in Alemy's death, including that it could be gang-related, a case of mistaken identity, a domestic issue or anything else.

Carr said the woman's death represents a greater escalation in a wave of violent and public shootings in recent weeks in Metro Vancouver, and he understands the public's frustration.

"All I can say is I hope these low-lifes, these thugs, decide to put an end to it themselves, and just stop this ridiculous carnage," said Carr.

Tougher penalties in effect

Meanwhile, federal Public Safety Minister Peter Van Loan told CBC Radio that the Conservative government has made significant changes to Canada's criminal laws to crack down on violent crime.

Last summer the government passed legislation requiring mandatory prison sentences for gun crimes, including simple possession of an illegal handgun, he said.

In addition, he said, people charged with a violent crime now have to prove in court they are not a threat to public safety and should be released on bail, rather than Crown prosecutors having to prove that they should not be released, he said.

Surrey mayor wants more police

Meanwhile, Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts said she understands the public's fear.

"If they are going to go as far as to shoot a woman in her car with a child in the back seat, then they don't care. They simply don't care. It's all about taking care of business," said Watts on Tuesday morning.

Watts said she plans to meet with federal officials on Tuesday to press for the hiring of more police officers and legislation for tougher sentences.

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