Slain man linked to gangs: Vancouver police

Vancouver police have identified the person shot dead in the Cambie Village area of Vancouver on Tuesday night and say he was a man known to them.
Police have identified Tuesday night's shooting victim as Rajinder Soomel, gunned down on busy Cambie Street in Vancouver. ((Vancouver police handout))

Vancouver police have identified the man shot dead in the Cambie Village area of Vancouver on Tuesday night, adding he was someone with "gang connections."

The victim was Rajinder Soomel, 35, of Surrey, B.C., police said in a release late Wednesday.

"Mr. Soomel was known to police and had gang connections," Const. Lindsey Houghton said in the release.

It was Vancouver's 18th homicide of 2009 and police say it was almost certainly a targeted shooting. No arrests have been made.

Residents reported hearing six to eight gunshots at about 10:15 p.m. PT. When police arrived, they found a man dead in the middle of Cambie Street, just south of West 19th Avenue.

Police blocked off traffic on Cambie Street after Soomel was found shot dead in the middle of the road Tuesday night. ((CBC))

Residents reported seeing at least two men wearing hoodie jackets fleeing from the area, but police said they had no suspects in custody and no suspect descriptions.

Cambie Street was closed to traffic as police spent Wednesday searching the area and canvassing the neighbourhood, said Houghton.

Vancouver police are asking anyone with information to call homicide investigators at 604-717-2500 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.