Suspected gunman among 3 dead in Toronto office shooting, police say

Click to play video: 'Suspected gunman among 3 dead in Toronto office shooting, police say'
Suspected gunman among 3 dead in Toronto office shooting, police say
WATCH: The investigation continues into the shooting deaths of three people in the lobby of an office building in North York on Monday afternoon. Police say two men and a woman were killed, and believe the shooter is among the dead. Jaden Lee-Lincoln has the latest – Jun 18, 2024

Toronto police say a shooting that took place in the lobby of an office building on Monday afternoon left three dead.

Police said gunshots were heard around Don Mills Road and Mallard Road just before 3:30 p.m.

Police initially said three people had been injured and paramedics told Global News nobody was transported from the scene.

Later, investigators confirmed three adults had been killed. On Tuesday, police said Arash Missaghi, 54 and Samira Yousefi, 44, of Concord were both killed in the shooting.

'Individual responsible for this shooting' among dead

Speaking at the scene on Monday evening, Toronto police Det.-Sgt. Al Bartlett said two men and a woman had died but declined to identify them further.

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“What I can say is that we believe the individual responsible for this shooting is among the deceased,” he said, suggesting the person police believe was the shooter was male.

On Tuesday, police confirmed the man thought to be responsible for the shooting had died and was 46 years old.

Bartlett said the police think the shooting took place in a business and that the altercation that led up to it was “in relation” to the business.

He said there were a number of businesses housed within the building but that the business where the shooting took place may have been handling financial transactions.

Detective Sergeant Alan Bartlett of Homicide and Missing Persons Unit speaks to media at the scene of a shooting that left three people dead in Toronto, Monday, June 17, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Arlyn McAdorey

Sharokh Biniyaz, a photographer and graphic designer who has an office in the same building, said he had heard gunshots and an argument.

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“I didn’t know what it was, thought it was maybe a circuit breaker or something because it was really loud,” he said.

“I came out of my office and I heard some arguments in the reception … I went back to my desk and sat down, and I heard the second bang after two minutes.”

Click to play video: 'Deceased in Toronto commercial building shooting identified'
Deceased in Toronto commercial building shooting identified

Biniyaz said at that point he walked out of his office again, heard a quarrel and then left the building through a back door.

“I called 911 — police came, quite fast,” he said.

Biniyaz said that when police arrived — but before they could enter the building — he heard “four, five, maybe six shots” one after another.

Shahrokh Biniyaz, who has a studio in a building where a shooting left three people dead, speaks to media, in Toronto, Monday, June 17, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Arlyn McAdorey

Det. Sgt Bartlett told reporters he had “no information” to suggest there was an interaction between police and the shooter. He added he would not “speculate” on the number of shots or the type of weapon used.

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Biniyaz said he left through the back of the building to call police because he feared what was happening.

“I was too afraid, to be honest with you. Too afraid to go forward and see what’s going on because the guy had a gun,” Biniyaz said.

Toronto police officers investigate reports of gunshots, in Toronto, Monday, June 17, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Arlyn McAdorey

The fatal shooting also shut down a school in the area, though police stressed the office was not related to the school or a nearby daycare.

Mallard Road — which is a dead-end route leading from Don Mills Road — was taped off by emergency services, blocking access to the end of the road, where a school, daycare and other buildings are located.

Northmount School, at the end of Mallard Road, was placed into lockdown.

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Police said members of its emergency task force and K9 units cleared a building in the area, with daycare staff and children exiting. Many of those exiting the building appeared emotional as some children were picked up by their caregivers.

TTC buses were also sent to the scene to shelter those waiting to be picked up.

Click to play video: 'Toronto lobby shooting: Suspect among the deceased, police say'
Toronto lobby shooting: Suspect among the deceased, police say

Around 6:30 p.m., police said all children had been picked up and reunited with their caregivers and parents.

Det. Sgt Bartlett reiterated later Monday evening that no students at either the school or local daycare were directly impacted by the shooting and said all had successfully been taken from the scene.

A significant police presence in the area continued into Monday night, with road closures and drivers told to expect delays.

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— with files from Global News’ Catherine McDonald and The Canadian Press

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