Victim in fatal Harvey Street shooting may not have been intended target: Hamilton police

Hamilton police believe 46-year-old David Stevens was not the intended target in a fatal shooting on Harvey Street in late January. Hamilton Police Service

Hamilton police say the man who was shot and killed in a central Hamilton neighbourhood in late January may not have been the intended target and that the alleged perpetrators likely had the “wrong address.”

Detectives from the major crime unit now believe David Stevens was not the intended mark after a shooter took his life at a home on Harvey Street in the Sanford Avenue and Cannon Street area on Jan. 29.

Click to play video: 'Hamilton Police looking for four-door Chevy sedan connected to fatal shooting'
Hamilton Police looking for four-door Chevy sedan connected to fatal shooting

Stevens was found dead by police and paramedics when they arrived around 11:30 p.m. to a home at 21 Harvey St.

Story continues below advertisement

The 46-year-old appeared to have suffered a gunshot wound, according to police.

READ MORE: Hamilton police release victim’s name in city’s 1st homicide of 2020

Read next: Rent control: What tenants should know as rental prices surge across Canada  

Detectives have not explained why they believe Stevens was not the intended target of the three suspects, saying only that they came to the conclusion based on witness statements, surveillance footage from the area, forensic examinations of the scene and other undisclosed evidence.

Investigators also believe they have identified a getaway car that was last seen travelling southbound on Birch Avenue and turning eastbound onto Wilson Street just after 11:35 p.m. on the night of Stevens’ death.

Hamilton Police on scene at an address on Harvey Street in late January investigating the city’s first homicide of 2020. Rick Zamperin / 900 CHML

Police say the vehicle is a 2015 or older-model four-door Chevrolet Cruze, silver or grey, with no sunroof.

Story continues below advertisement

Investigators have not recovered a weapon but believe only one firearm was used during the incident.

Following the shooting, Det. Sgt. Peter Thom said Stevens, who is from the Hamilton area, had had a few “interactions” with police in the past but nothing that would suggest he would be targeted in a killing.

He added that the home, which operates as a rooming house with seven bedrooms, had nine people inside at the time.

READ MORE: 7-year-old boy is an ‘innocent victim’ in shooting — Hamilton police

Read next: Pope clarifies comments on homosexuality, says sexual act ‘outside of marriage’ is a sin

“Everyone in the house, I will say, has co-operated with police,” said Thom. “Because of the time of night, the setup of the residence, some people witnessed particular aspects of this, and we have had co-operation from all of them.”

Dwayne, a neighbour who asked that his last name not be used, told Global News he heard a bang and went downstairs to look out a front window.

Click to play video: 'Hamilton councillor calls for tougher stance on gun crime in wake of shooting'
Hamilton councillor calls for tougher stance on gun crime in wake of shooting

He said he spotted a vehicle, which he identified as a silver compact four-door Chevrolet, as well as a couple of men in their early 20s who ran to the vehicle in an “expedient” manner.

Story continues below advertisement

Dwayne said it’s not shocking that this happened in his neighbourhood.

“Things happen around here,” he said. “There was a shooting a couple months back by Tim Hortons on Cannon, and basically, yeah, it’s indicative of this area, I would say.”

READ MORE: Second teenager charged in Tim Hortons shooting, Hamilton police say

Read next: Taliban double down on barring women from taking university entry exams

Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to contact Det. Rich Wouters of the Hamilton police major crime unit at 905-546-4921 or anonymously contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or online.

— With files from Global News’ Rick Zamperin and Lisa Polewski

Sponsored content