Hamilton’s 15th homicide of 2021 was an 18-year-old male student from Bernie Custis Secondary School, according to an official with the learning facility.
In a letter to parents on Monday, Principal Sonya Sykes revealed Yua Blut Kaw, 18, was in fact the teen walking on Cannon Street between Barnesdale Avenue North and Lottridge Street when reportedly shot by someone in a dark-coloured, four-door sedan.
“We all share in the grief and sadness of having lost a student in our Hamilton community,” Sykes said.
“Our condolences are extended to the student’s family and friends.”
The flag at the school was lowered to half-mast on Monday in light of the tragedy.
Police say they still have no suspects at present and an investigation is ongoing.
The principal of Prince of Wales Elementary School, which is less than half a kilometre from Custis, also revealed the incident to parents of its students in a post on Monday.
Mubina Panju said children were outside the facility participating in the BGC Hamilton-Halton’s “Let’s Get Moving” after-school program and a licensed child care.
“Staff and children moved safely in the building, and no one was harmed,” Panju said in the letter.
“Our child care partner communicated directly with the parents and caregivers of the children impacted by this incident.”
Both schools are offering support to students, parents, guardians, and caregivers via tips from an online portal and through two organizations offering crisis support, COAST Hamilton and Kids Help Phone.
Sykes insisted in her letter that the school “remains a safe place” for students and staff.
“We will continue to support the school community and reach out to our community partners,” Sykes said.
“The additional support provided will assist students and staff in their ability to show care and compassion in this situation.”