Officer in shootout with suspect at gas station in South Vancouver
A long-time member of the Vancouver police department shot and killed a man yesterday afternoon during a rush-hour shootout at a gas station in South Vancouver.
The incident is being investigated by Vancouver’s major crime section.
Just before 4 p.m., a witness called police about a suspected drunk driver at a Shell service station at 41st Avenue and Knight Street.
"When the officer approached the man, he produced a handgun," said Const. Tim Fanning, a spokesman for the department. "Shots were exchanged and the man was shot."
The man was rushed to hospital, but died on the way.
He was reportedly in his early 20s, but had not yet been identified, Fanning said. He did not know how many shots were fired.
The officer, "a senior officer with at least 15 years" on the force, was not injured in the exchange of gunfire, Fanning said.
Following the incident, investigators taped off the southbound lane, causing long traffic backups during afternoon rush hour. More than a dozen police cruisers surrounded the gas station with their lights flashing.
Near the gas pumps, a navy blue Pontiac Sunfire, with a dented front right fender and a spare tire, was crushed up against the bumper of a black BMW M-series sedan. A small hatchback with Channel M markings was parked in one corner of the parking lot.
Several officers combed the area with flashlights, searching nearby bushes and the front of seat of the blue Sunfire. Three small yellow numbered markers could be seen on the ground, indicating where bullet casings were found.
Witnesses, including a Channel M cameraman, were ushered onto a transit bus and transported away from the scene. The cameraman arrived on the scene after the shooting. and police were reviewing the tape to see if it was evidence, Fanning said.
Early reports suggest road rage may have sparked the incident.