Three suspects taken into custody immediately after a fatal shooting in Nanaimo have since been released and police are still investigating the case.
RCMP issued a press release this weekend following a daytime homicide Thursday, May 20, that happened in the Rock City Plaza parking lot.
“We believe this event has a nexus to the ongoing gang-conflict and violence currently plaguing a number of Lower Mainland communities,” said Nanaimo RCMP acting Insp. Donovan Tait in a press release.
The release says “investigators will be conducting a massive video-surveillance canvass” of businesses in the area. RCMP seized a white 2003 Cadillac Escalade SUV the day of the crime, but are trying to find out more about its movements as the vehicle and its occupants are “thought to have been in the Nanaimo area a few days prior to the event.” Police say they also want to hear from any witnesses who might have seen a Caucasian woman walking toward Jumping Jiminy’s at the time of the shooting.
“We would like express our sincere thanks to those alert citizens who contacted the police in a timely fashion providing valuable information to our investigators as this event unfolded, resulting in the arrests that were made ” said Tait. “These witness reports had a direct impact on our ability to take these individuals into custody quickly and safely. We have received great co-operation from many in the public contacting us with additional information helping us fill in some gaps, but we do need more.”
RCMP previously reported that a man found dead of gunshot wounds at Rock City Plaza, several individuals were arrested at the Best Western Northgate, the hotel was secured for forensic investigation and a vehicle was seized.
Police said the three suspects who were taken into custody have “ties to the Lower Mainland.”
Anyone with information to assist with the case is asked to call Nanaimo RCMP’s serious crime unit at 250-754-2345.