ON August 16, at approximately 3:23 a.m., police found 45-year-old Delphin Paul Prestbakmo with fatal stab wounds in the 1800-block of 152nd Street in Surrey. The Integrated Police Dog Services were deployed to the scene and led to a nearby house where one male was arrested. This male has since been released from police custody pending further investigation.
Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) says their detectives are continuing to actively gather the evidence for furtherance to the B.C. Prosecution Service for charge assessment.
After careful examination of the information collected so far, investigators believe that the suspects may have known Prestbakmo. However, investigators believe this was an unprovoked attack. The nature of the incident is still under investigation.
IHIT has also learned of an incident that occurred that same night that resulted in the victim, a man in his sixties, sustaining extensive injuries. The victim was seen at 11:55 p.m. on August 15 at the Coast Capital Savings in the 1700-block of 152nd Street. This incident is being investigated by the White Rock RCMP and IHIT is working with their investigators to explore any possible linkages between the two cases. Anyone with information regarding this particular incident is asked to contact police immediately.
The family of Prestbakmo is appealing for the public’s help for information that could help solve his murder.
“We know there are witnesses with important information about what happened to Paul who are reluctant to come forward,” says IHIT Sgt. Frank Jang. “This is an active and ongoing investigation and we need every witness to come forward and speak with IHIT.”
“White Rock RCMP is working closely with IHIT and Surrey RCMP to determine what led to the injuries sustained by the victim in White Rock. The safety of our community is our priority and there will be a focussed effort to determine if these two incidents are connected. Residents will be seeing more uniformed members in the area,” says White Rock RCMP spokesperson Chantal Sears.
Anyone with information is asked to call the IHIT information line at 1-877-551- IHIT (4448), or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Should you wish to remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
Appeal from Prestbakmo’s sister Angela:
We should not have to be here today making this statement. I never thought I would have to stand here today and read this statement from our family, about the sudden death of our beloved brother, son, uncle, friend and spouse, Dephin Paul Prestbakmo. Pauly, as most knew him.
I am having difficulty finding the right words – if there are any, to express the heartache, emptiness and devastating sense of loss our family has experienced with the sudden death and loss of our brother Paul. Our lives were forever shattered into pieces.
We have come forward here today to release this statement in the hopes that our community understands our brother Paul was a victim of a heinous murder and we need your help.
Paul was suddenly taken from us in the early hours of Friday morning, August 16, 2019 when he was attacked and murdered while walking near the Semiahmoo Mall in South Surrey and those responsible remain at large.
This tragedy has forever changed the lives of our family and friends for years to come. We will never again be able to hear his infectious rolling belly laugh, his contagious smile that would light up a room and his outrageous sense of humor and his love of life.
Over his short 45-year-life, he made many friends along the way. Helping out folks with mechanical car repairs or helping people move. He was a great-hearted person who would help anyone in need.
His sudden senseless death was devastating news for many friends and the local community. He will be sadly missed by many.
He was taken from our lives too soon. He was an innocent victim of a heinous criminal act and there are people in our community who have the information that can assist with this file.
I would like to end this statement with this one last thing: Our brother, Pauly had a lot of different sayings. One, in particular, sticks out for our family here today that I would like to share: When things were not going so good or working out, he would say “hey, let’s make it right! – do the right thing.”
So, on behalf of my family and our friends, we speak for our brother Pauly one last time: HEY, LET’S MAKE IT RIGHT AND DO THE RIGHT THING!
We do not wish any repeat of this act to happen to anyone else.
We implore those who have information, to please come forward and report any information to the RCMP. We are hoping that another family will not have to stand here, like we are today and go through what we are going through, requesting the same of our community.
My family and I are asking for your help. Please, if anyone has any relevant information, anything that can help us find those responsible and assist with closure of this case, please come forward. We would really appreciate it.
Please contact IHIT investigators or your local RCMP.