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4 Ontario police officers have been killed within 1 month

Four Ontario police officers have been killed within one month.

The latest killings of two South Simcoe Police officers in Innisfil, Ont., follow the deaths of Toronto police Const. Andrew Hong in Mississauga on Sept. 12 and York Regional Police Const. Travis Gillespie in Markham on Sept. 14.

In the latest incident in Innisfil, South Simcoe Police said officers had responded to a report of a disturbance at a home in the area of 25th Sideroad and 9th Line at around 7:55 p.m. on Tuesday.

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Police said the two responding officers were shot inside the home.

Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday, South Simcoe Police Acting Chief John Van Dyke identified the deceased as Const. Devon Northrup and Const. Morgan Russell.

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Van Dyke said Northrup was 33 years old and was a member of the service for six years.

Russell was 54 years old and was a 33-year member of the service, Van Dyke said.

Both were rushed to a local hospital and Northrup died a short time later. Russell was then airlifted to a Toronto trauma centre in critical condition where he later died.

Const. Devon Northrup (left) and Const. Morgan Russell are shown South Simcoe Police Service handout photos. The officers were killed after responding to a disturbance call at a home in Innisfil, Ont. on Tuesday night. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-South Simcoe Police Service

The 23-year-old suspect, meanwhile, died after an exchange of gunfire between the man and officers, the Special Investigations Unit said, though it’s currently unclear if the suspect took his own life.

The officers’ deaths come as the police community continues to mourn the passing of Hong and Gillespie.

On Sept. 12, during a shooting rampage in the Toronto area, Hong was “ambushed” by 40-year-old Sean Petrie while on a lunch break at a Mississauga Tim Hortons, police said.

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The 22-year veteran of the force was shot and died at the scene in the Winston Churchill Boulevard and Argentia Road area.

Const. Andrew Hong poses in this undated family handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Hong Family

Police previously said Petrie waited outside the Tim Hortons for more than two hours, likely looking to target a uniformed officer.

Another victim was shot at that scene as Petrie carjacked a vehicle, police said.

Petrie then went to MK Auto Repairs on Bronte Street near Main Street in Milton — where he previously worked — and shot three others, killing two of them.

Petrie later died during an interaction with officers at a cemetery in Hamilton.

Two days after that incident, Gillespie was killed in a head-on crash in Markham while he was on his way to work.

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The fatal crash took place in the area of Major Mackenzie Drive East and Warden Avenue at around 6 a.m. on Sept. 14.

York Regional Police Const. Travis Gillespie, aged 38, was killed in a crash on Sept. 14. Handout / York Regional Police

Gillespie was driving a white Honda when he was involved in a collision with a Porsche Cayenne, police previously said.

Gillespie was sworn in as a constable on April 29, 2020. Before joining York Regional Police, he worked as a constable for Metrolinx/GO Transit and volunteered with the Community Living and Primal MMA Academy, police said.

Markham resident Haoju Zhou, 23, faces impaired-related charges in relation to that crash.

The chiefs of both the Toronto Police Service and York Regional Police Service have issued condolences following the latest incident.

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A procession is held as the body of a fallen South Simcoe Police officer is taken from a hospital in downtown Toronto to the Office of the Chief Coroner. Twitter / @SouthSimcoePS

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— With files from Gabby Rodrigues and Hannah Jackson

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