Four-year sentence for fatal hit-and-run on Surrey’s 135A Street

The 2013 incident killed 40-year-old Surrey resident Robert Paterson

(File photo: New Westminster Supreme Court)                                (File photo: New Westminster Supreme Court)

(File photo: New Westminster Supreme Court) (File photo: New Westminster Supreme Court)

A man has been sentenced to four and a half years in jail after a fatal hit-and-run near Surrey’s 135A Street “Strip” in 2013.

Christopher Griffith was found guilty on Aug. 17 of criminal negligence causing death and failing to stop at an accident causing bodily arm. He is also prohibited from driving for 11.5 years.

Griffith was sentenced four years to the date of the incident that killed 40-year-old Surrey resident Robert Paterson on the Strip, a few blocks of road known for homelessness and drug activity.

According to homicide investigators, Surrey RCMP received a call just after midnight on Aug. 17, 2013, regarding a man who had been hit by a vehicle near the Royal Canadian Legion at 106th Avenue and 135A Street.

When crews arrived, they found Paterson suffering from serious life-threatening injuries. He was rushed to hospital but died en route.

At the time, witnesses at the scene revealed the incident might have been targeted, saying the driver seemed to aim for Paterson and several other people who were narrowly missed.

Sgt. Jennifer Pound of the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) confirmed as much in 2013.

“Evidence retrieved thus far by IHIT supports the theory that this was a deliberate act on the part of the driver,” Pound said in a release at the time.