Family of teen fatally shot tracking lost cellphone speaks out

Jeremy Ryan Cook, 18, is seen in a photo provided by police after he was gunned down in London on June 14.
Jeremy Ryan Cook, 18, is seen in a photo provided by police after he was gunned down in London on June 14. Handout/London Police Service

TORONTO — The family of an 18-year-old Brampton man who was shot and killed while allegedly trying to retrieve his lost cellphone in London, Ont. last month says they are thankful to police and the public for their support.

“We would like to personally thank the London and Ottawa police departments for their dedication and diligence in investigating the death of our son Jeremy,” a message from the family read on Thursday on a GoFundMe fundraising page set up by a family friend.

“We are without words for the incredible generosity of our family, friends, as well as complete strangers who have heard Jeremy’s story and have made a donation, sent heart-warming condolences and prayers.”

Cook was fatally shot on June 14 after he left his cellphone in a taxi cab and electronically tracked it to a parking lot at 1181 Highbury Ave. North in London.

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Cook likely used a service like Apple’s Find my iPhone app, which uses the GPS and networking capabilities built into the iPhone to detect its location.

READ MORE: Father of accused in fatal shooting of Brampton teen says son is innocent

Upon arriving at the address with a relative at about 5:15 a.m., police said they approached a silver 2004 Mazda 6 four-door sedan occupied by three men and a “discussion occurred about the phone.”

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Police said one of the passengers exited the car and walked away from the area while the vehicle started to drive away, which is when Cook then partially climbed onto the car and held onto the driver’s side door.

The vehicle drove northbound on Highbury Avenue and then turned east, which is when police said shots were fired and reported by witnesses.

READ MORE: Teen fatally shot tracking lost cellphone remembered as ‘incredible kid’

Police responded to the scene and found the victim without vital signs after suffering multiple gunshot wounds behind a plaza located at Highbury Avenue and Huron Street.

Paramedics attempted to revive Cook, but were unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

“Words cannot express the pain that we are feeling with the loss of Jeremy but the support that we have received will eventually allow us to find some form of peace,” the family wrote on Thursday.

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“Our family is putting our faith and complete trust in the many police departments involved and the job that they are doing in order to find the truth and we believe there will be justice for Jeremy.”

On Tuesday, Ontario’s police watchdog identified the body of a man found in Ottawa’s Rideau River over the weekend as Muhab Sultanaly Sultan, the person wanted since June 19 on a second-degree murder charge by London Police in connection to Cook’s death.

Ottawa Police said last Thursday that Sultan was in a vehicle when he tried to run over two on-duty bicycle officers in downtown Ottawa at King Edward Avenue and Rideau Street around 4 p.m. last Wednesday, leaving one officer with minor injuries.

They said they gave chase in a squad car and ended up on Wiggins Private near the Rideau River, where they said two suspects jumped out and officers arrested one, but lost the other.

READ MORE: Body found in Rideau River identified as man wanted in London teen’s murder

Several hours later police said they were called to the river’s edge at Range Road and Mann Avenue, where witnesses reported a man was trying to swim across the river.

Police entered the river after the man was showing signs of distress, but as they approached the suspect went under the water.

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Sultan’s body was later recovered on Saturday following a two-day search.

With files from David Shum, Lama Nicolas and Christina Stevens

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