Toronto police say they are not looking for suspects in a shooting at an Airbnb unit that claimed three lives.
“We have information and evidence gathered that the shooters involved are now the ones that have been identified as deceased,” said Toronto police media relations officer Alex Li.
He could not specifically name the victims who were believed to have fired a weapon. Two others were also injured in the incident.
Li told reporters Saturday that they have since recovered two firearms that were involved in the incident and that they are not looking for any outstanding suspects.
“Our investigators of the homicide unit are still appealing to any witnesses, because, as you can tell, it was within a condo,” said Li.
Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders told reporters Friday night that emergency crews were called to the building on Queens Wharf Road at Fort York Boulevard, east of Bathurst Street, just after 10:20 p.m. with reports of gunshots being heard.
“Multiple people were, in fact, shot. Right now what we have is five people were injured as a result of this occurrence,” he said outside of the condo building.
“The shots fired were inside this complex … multiple floors are involved. We found people on other floors.”
A spokesperson for Toronto Paramedics initially said four victims had serious injuries and a fifth person had minor injuries. The patients were all described as adult males.
In his update, Saunders said three of the victims succumbed to their injuries. Officers later said the fourth victim had non-life-threatening gunshot-related injuries. The fifth victim had minor injuries after being cut by an object, adding they weren’t shot.
The three men who were killed were identified as Jalen Colley, 21, and Joshua Gibson-Skeir, 20, of Brampton as well as Tyronne Noseworthy, 19, of Toronto.
Police said the shooting began at a “social gathering” happening at a unit being rented out on Airbnb.
In a statement sent to Global News, Airbnb said the booking guest has since been removed from their platform.
“We are deeply saddened by the tragedy that occurred in Toronto last night and our thoughts are with all who have been impacted — including the victims and their loved ones as well as the neighbouring residents,” the statement said.
“We are in close coordination with Toronto Police Services to offer our full support of their investigation into this senseless gun violence. We have zero tolerance for this type of behaviour, and we ban both party houses and unauthorized parties on our platform.”
Saunders said he wanted to attend the scene to “reassure” residents and to ensure adequate resources were being made available, noting the homicide squad along with other specialized units were called in to lead the investigation.
“I want to make sure I reassure the community that we will do anything and everything that we can to resolve these kinds of cases. I certainly am not comfortable showing up at the scene where three people have been dead as a result of gun activity,” he said.
“We’re great at the reactive piece when people are shot. We show up and we conduct fulsome investigations and a lot of time we make those arrests … but I think there’s a bigger picture and a bigger statement that needs to be done, and that’s what we need to do collectively as community stakeholders to work with law enforcement to reduce and in fact eliminate any type of gunplay that we have in this city.
When asked what the underlying issues are in this shooting, Saunders said he didn’t want to speculate as the investigation is still in the early stages. He said based on the limited information he had, he didn’t “think the public is really to be concerned about their safety at this point in time.”
“We’re not sure what the events were that led to this particular scenario where people have been shot and killed,” Saunders said.
“Right now three people have lost their lives, and we’re doing everything that we can as a police agency to make sure that we get a fulsome story and an account of what has happened.”
He said the Toronto police homicide squad was going to provide an update on Saturday.
Khalid Hamadeh, who told Global News that he just moved back to Canada after being away for two years, said he was “honestly surprised” by the shooting Friday night.
“When I was out of Canada, I heard about this sort of thing happening on the news. But it’s kind of shocking it would happen here and I’m a bit shaken that people were shot near me here,” he said.
“I don’t know what the circumstances were, but it does scare me a bit that this could happen so close to me and my friends.
“Should I be nervous moving forward? I’m not sure. I’ve always felt safe in Toronto, but I’m worried about what this means going forward.”
Meanwhile, Saunders said investigators are urging for witnesses, or anyone in the area at the time of the shooting with information, to call police at 416-808-7400 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-8477.
— With files from David Lao