RCMP Superintendent Ward Lymburner, in charge of the Provincial Unsolved Homicide Unit. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)

Surrey man shot dead in front of his wife on their wedding day in 2011

Manbir Kajla, 30, was gunned down after fender-bender crash in Newton. A murder charge has been laid

Surrey resident Manbir Kajla, 30, was shot dead seven years ago in what police say was a random act of traffic road rage at a Newton intersection. He and his 27-year-old wife had just been married earlier that day, on April 27, 2011, and were in their Lexus just after 11 p.m. when they got into a minor crash.

“Mr. Kajla and his new wife had only been married that morning and were driving down 68th Avenue and 128th Street in Surrey when a minor collision between the Kajla’s vehicle and that of Samandeep Gill,” said RCMP Superintendent Ward Lymburner, in charge of the Provincial Unsolved Homicide Unit. “When Mr. Kajla approached Gill’s vehicle he was shot by a suspect who then fled the scene.”

“This appears to be a case of road rage,” Lymburner said.

On Saturday, Surrey resident Samandeep Singh Gill, 30, was arrested and charged with second-degree murder in Kajla’s death and the attempted murder of Kajla’s wife. Lymburner said Gill was arrested “without incident.”

Kajla died of multiple gunshot wounds.

“This investigation determined this was a random act of violence and that the suspect and victims were not known to each other,” Lymburner said. “It’s been hard on the families affected and I want to express my sincere condolences to the family of Manbir Kajla. I want them to know police have always been working towards an arrest.

“I hope news of the charges brings some semblance of peace.”

Police read a statement from Kajla’s family during a press conference in Surrey on Monday afternoon. Family members were not there.

“We’ve waited seven long years for this moment, and we are relieved that closure is in sight,” the statement reads, in part. “Only we know the unimaginable grief that our family has been going through and the toll it has taken on every family member. What we have been going through is something that no family should ever have to go through. Manbir was a loving member of our family and the void that his murder has left in our hearts can never be filled. He was a fun-loving person who is missed deeply, every day.”

“He had a heart of gold.”

The Provincial Unsolved Homicide Unit took conduct of the investigation from the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team in 2016. Lymburner said the investigation “required a great deal of time and resources, however, it never lay dormant. All our officers worked diligently, committed to bringing about justice for this senseless killing.”

He said police are not releasing Kajla’s widow’s name. “The family has asked for privacy. We’re respecting that.”

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