2 dead, 2 suspects arrested after Whistler Village shooting
Police have confirmed the shooting was related to gang conflict in B.C.'s Lower Mainland
Police say two people are dead and two suspects have been arrested after a shooting at the mountain resort of Whistler, B.C., on Sunday afternoon.
Insp. Robert Dykstra, the officer in charge of the Sea to Sky RCMP, said officers were on patrol when a report came in just after noon of shots fired at the Sundial Hotel in Whistler Village.
"They found one male there obviously deceased and a second male in distress," said Dykstra.
Efforts were made to save the man's life, but he was later declared dead in hospital, he said.
Officers followed a vehicle on Highway 99, stopped it near Squamish, and two people were arrested in connection with the shooting, Dykstra said.
The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) has taken over the investigation, with help from British Columbia's anti-gang agency, the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit, and others.
In a statement Sunday night, IHIT Sgt. Timothy Pierotti identified the victims as Satindera Gill and Meninder Dhaliwal, saying both were known to police.
"This is believed to have been a targeted shooting in relation to the ongoing Lower Mainland gang conflict," he said.
Pierotti says police found a burned-out vehicle believed to be associated with the shooting on Blueberry Drive in Whistler, about a five-minute drive from the hotel.
"Sea to Sky RCMP were able to locate and apprehend multiple individuals," he said.
IHIT is asking anyone who was in either area throughout the morning, or any associates of Gill or Dhaliwal, to come forward.
Local business owners, bystanders shaken up
Police tape and a paramedic vehicle were seen in Whistler Village, outside Showcase Snowboards, at Sundial Crescent on Sunday afternoon.
An area of the storefront was cordoned off, with emergency responders on site. People sheltered within nearby businesses after unconfirmed reports of a shooting spread on social media.
The owner of a Whistler Village grocery store told CBC News they were keeping their doors closed as a precaution on Sunday afternoon.
"It does have an impact in the community and people are afraid," said Dykstra. "We don't believe the public is at any risk of any further danger."
Resort activities closed for the day
Activities at the popular tourist destination, located 120 kilometres north of Vancouver, were shut down after the shooting was reported.
"RCMP have officially cleared the Whistler area of any imminent danger," said Whistler Blackcomb Operations in a tweet at 3 p.m.
"Out of respect for all of those impacted, and our guests and team members, we will be closing Whistler Blackcomb for the rest of the day, effective immediately."
Spokesperson Sara Roston said in a statement that the resort team is "shocked and deeply saddened by this senseless act of violence."
RCMP say they will be sharing further information when it's available and have asked witnesses or anyone with information regarding the incident to contact the Whistler detachment at 604-932-3044.
With files from Akshay Kulkarni, Josh Grant, Sohrab Sandhu, Jessica Cheung, Brittany Roffel