A toddler has died after being struck by an air conditioner that fell from an apartment building in the city’s east end, according to Toronto police.
Officers responded to a Toronto Community Housing (TCH) apartment building on Lawrence Avenue East and Mossbank Drive, near Scarborough Golf Club Road, at around 3:30 p.m. Monday.
Investigators initially told Global News that a mother was returning home with her three young children after picking two of them up from school.
The two-year-old child was in her stroller when the air-conditioning unit fell from the eighth floor of the building and struck her, police said.
Paramedics had rushed her to the Hospital for Sick Kids in critical condition, but she later died in hospital, officials said.
Officers told Global News they are conducting a forensic investigation and are looking for any surveillance video or witnesses “to ensure we know exactly what happened,” adding that preliminary information suggests the incident was a “tragic accident.”
One resident said when she witnessed the incident from the balcony, she ran down to console the mother.
“I heard her screaming,” Sherene Bromfield said. “I could see her trying to revive her daughter, and I didn’t even grab my jacket, I grabbed my keys and ran downstairs.”
Mayor John Tory also expressed his condolences about the incident.
The girl’s family released a statement Tuesday evening through their lawyer, Slavko Ristich.
“Our family has lost our precious baby girl Crystal. We are devastated,” the statement read.
“We would ask that through this difficult time we be given the opportunity to grieve our loss privately. We wanted to thank the public for the outpouring of support for our family while we are struggling to cope.”
TCH said in a statement Tuesday, that they are “deeply saddened” by the death of the child, adding that staff are onsite at the building to assist tenants who might require support.
There is no word yet on whether charges may be laid, and the investigation remains ongoing.
Ristich Law, meanwhile, said they, “Believe this was an entirely preventable incident,” and added they hope to see “improvements” made at TCH buildings.
The law firm said they have also launched their own investigation into the incident.
A family member has set up a GoFundMe for Crystal’s family “to help with funeral expenses and relocating the family to another building.”
— With files from Nick Westoll and Jamie Mauracher