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Far West in Toronto, four shootings in six hours

TORONTO – Blood flows non-stop in the GTA. And it does so in broad daylight. After the four shootings on Friday and Saturday in which four people died and five were injured, on Sunday in four other shootings one man died and seven people sustained injuries. Four shootings, the latter, all took place in Toronto in the space of six hours. 

To lose his life was a man who was hit by gunfire near the 31 Lotherton Pathway, near Caledonia Road south of Lawrence Avenue West: for him the paramedics who arrived on the spot could not do anything but declare his death.

Police said today that the seven survivors of the other shootings in Toronto are not in danger of life. Among the injured are a 15-year-old boy and a 16-year-old boy who were hit by bullets at 2:42 p.m. — some witnesses say they heard 15 gunshots — in an apartment building on Humber Boulevard, near Weston Road and Black Creek Drive.

In another shooting that took place around 4:17 p.m. in Amaranth Court, north of Allen Road and Lawrence Avenue West, a man sustained serious injuries.

The shooting at an unauthorised car rally on McCowan Road was originally planned in Pickering, but Durham Regional Police blocked access to pickering’s location and drivers then headed to Scarborough.

Toronto police declined to elaborate on why they did not block access to the site on McCowan Road. “From what I know we were informed in the late afternoon that the event was moving west. I have nothing more to say,” police superintendent Steve Watts cut short.

Investigations to shed light on the shootings in which a man died and two teenagers aged 15 and 17, four other men and a woman were injured are ongoing but so far no suspect has been arrested. Watts said investigators are “working to determine any links between the incidents, but information is currently scarce.”

The mayor of Toronto’s condemnation of this wave of shootings that caused deaths and injuries was not long in coming. “It is extremely disturbing – said the mayor – any act of armed violence in our city is unacceptable, this weekend’s shootings are unacceptable, including the one in which two young boys were victims. I have spoken to Chief Ramer and I know that the police are committed to resolving every case and ensuring that those who commit acts of armed violence in our city are brought to justice.”

Tory said he supports police efforts and federal initiatives to freeze the sale of guns and ban most semi-automatic firearms from being privately owned. “I will continue to support the police, including our task force on weapons and gangs, doing everything I can to stop gun violence as well as cracking down on the flow of illegal weapons into Canada,” Tory said.

Superintendent Watts said his officers have strong evidence that most of the weapons used in the shootings in Toronto come from the United States and are smuggled across the border. “The problem with gun violence in Toronto in particular, is illegal guns imported from the United States.” Watts is convinced that a gun buyback program — the so-called buyback program — would do little to get them off the road. “No one will give an illegal American gun for a buyback program, those guns are being used for criminal purposes.”

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