Tory ties Toronto shooting to gangs, but police not going that far

Toronto Mayor John Tory is tying a shooting that claimed two lives in the city’s bustling entertainment district to gang violence, although a police spokesman would not go so far.

Police say two men were killed and a woman was injured after shots rang out in front of a downtown nightclub near the corner of Queen Street West and Spadina Avenue on Saturday evening.

Speaking to media about the incident at a Canada Day event Sunday morning, Tory linked the shooting to gang violence, saying people with ties to gangs are “the only ones that pose a threat” to the city.

But Toronto police Const. David Hopkinson said he couldn’t confirm that the shooting was linked to organized crime.

On Sunday morning, Hopkinson said he expected investigators to release the names of the deceased later that day, but by Sunday afternoon he said he could not confirm when the identities would be released.

Tory said he’s spoken with the city’s police chief, and he knows officers are working hard to “round these people up and get them off the street.

The mayor also renewed his call for systemic action to keep people accused of gun crimes off the streets.

“Some of these people who are out on bail … have been doing this repeatedly,” he said.

“We can’t have people getting out on bail 20 minutes after they’re arrested for using a gun.”

According to police statistics for 2018, there had been 199 shootings in the city as of June 25, and 22 people killed by gun violence. There had been 170 shootings by the same time last year, the statistics show, resulting in 16 deaths.

The latest violence — on a busy downtown street in broad daylight — has some Torontonians feeling unsafe in the city.

Carrie Ma, 18, was having a barbecue on the rooftop of a residential building near Saturday’s incident. She happened to be taking a video of her friends as the gunshots were fired, and the sound is captured on the clip.

“Most of us have never heard gunshots before so we thought it was fireworks going off a day early for Canada Day, but then we began to hear sirens coming towards us,” said Ma, who is originally from nearby Richmond Hill, Ont.

“I’m about to enter university and I will be living downtown, so it’s a little scary,” said Ma, who will soon begin studying at OCAD University.

“It’s making me doubt whether I should live downtown — although I know it could happen anywhere.”

Just Posted

Woman who posed as animal control officer sentenced in Red Deer court

B.C. woman sentenced to 90 days in prison after targeting and harassing Innisfail dog owner

One of the last buildings needed for Red Deer’s 2019 Winter Games is being completed

RDC residence is on schedule, despite ‘tight’ time-frame, says RDC official

Red Deer singer/songwriter is Top 3 finalist in Project Wild

Ryan Langlois, who wins at least $50,000, will find out Nov. 24 if he gets top prize

Man charged in fatal hit and run in North Red Deer

‘The victim had been standing by a parked vehicle, not in the traffic lane, when he was hit’

A No-Go: Athletes and officials weigh in after Calgary votes ‘no’ to 2026 bid

TORONTO — Rotating Olympic hosts? A single go-to destination every four years?… Continue reading

Predators may have NHL’s best goalie combo on, off ice

NASHVILLE — Pekka Rinne is off to an even better start than… Continue reading

Canadian Premier League buys Ontario’s League 1, looks to develop talent there

TORONTO — The Canadian Premier League has bought Ontario’s League 1 and… Continue reading

2015 ‘Bachelor’ star pleads guilty to reduced charge

INDEPENDENCE, Iowa — A farmer who appeared on ABC’s “The Bachelor” pleaded… Continue reading

‘Game of Thrones’ returning in April 2019 for final season

LOS ANGELES — The eighth and last season of “Game of Thrones”… Continue reading

Big question for Amazon’s 2 chosen cities: Will it pay off?

WASHINGTON — The awarding of Amazon’s second headquarters to two affluent localities… Continue reading

Calgarians vote ‘no’ on 2026 Olympic bid in non-binding plebiscite

CALGARY — The results are in, and a majority of Calgarians are… Continue reading

Leon Draisaitl scores and adds two assists to power Oilers past Canadiens 6-2

EDMONTON — Leon Draisaitl had a goal and two assists and Connor… Continue reading

Most Read