Vietnamese community holds vigil for man killed by police

WATCH: A vigil happened for a 51-year-old man who was shot to death by Vancouver Police during an altercation last month. As Julia Foy reports, organizers want answers about Tony Du’s death.

Members of Vancouver’s Vietnamese community held a vigil Sunday in honour of Phuong Na (Tony) Du, who was shot and killed by police last month.

The vigil occurred at E. 41st Ave. and Knight St., the same place where Du was shot following a confrontation with members of the Vancouver Police Department.

On Nov. 22, officers responded to a report of an agitated man waving a two-by-four. According to a VPD statement following the shooting, Du confronted officers who tried to disarm him using non-lethal force. Du was eventually shot and sent to hospital, but did not survive.

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A vigil organizer says too many questions remain unanswered about Du’s death, which is being investigated by the Independent Investigations Office.

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“We are deeply disturbed by the circumstances of Mr. Phuong’s death and the actions of the Vancouver Police Department,” says Chanel Ly in a statement.

At least one witness questioned whether officers needed to use force when dealing with Du. Joe Tobias managed to videotape most of what happened after the shooting.

Watch: The cell phone video shot by Joe Tobias in the moments after the incident

“I told the officer, I did not question what they did, I just said it did not have to go this way,” said Tobias. “It is so unfortunate that this gentleman could not have been dealt with in some other way.”

Vigil organizers add that 11 Vietnamese in the Lower Mainland have been killed in violent incidents in the past five years.

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-with files from Yuliya Talmazan

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