A man was shot by police near an elementary school in Scarborough’s Port Union neighborhood, prompting hundreds of children at nearby schools to go into lockdown on Thursday afternoon.
At 1:24 p.m., paramedics were called to the intersection of Lawrence Avenue East and Port Union Road in Toronto for a shooting, according to CP24.
Police were called to Maberley Crescent and Oxhorn Road, just east of the shooting scene, about 30 minutes earlier for reports of a person carrying a rifle on the street.
“Police were confronted by an individual and because of circumstances that followed are now the subject of an SIU (Special Investigations Unit) investigation, I’m prohibited from discussing further what occurred,” Toronto police Chief James Ramer said.
At 2:40 p.m., police said the SIU was called to the scene to investigate.
Video obtained from a witness at the scene shows officers cordoning off a section of East Avenue, several hundred metres from William G. Davis Public school.
A body covered with an orange tarp can be seen on the sidewalk.
Ramer confirmed that the individual had died following the incident.
“There is no threat to the public as this is believed to be an isolated incident,” Ramer said.
When asked where the individual seen with a rifle was going and what he was going to do, Ramer said he will let investigators determine that.
“Let’s not speculate as to what’s occurred here today and what was happening. And so in the fullness of time, we will investigate every aspect of this, and we’ll have a better understanding of what has occurred,” Ramer said.
“But we have no understanding at this point in time, what was about to happen, or what could have happened. So I don’t want to speculate and suggest that it’s something similar to what’s happened in the United States,” he added, referring to a mass shooting earlier this week at an elementary school in Texas.
Ramer said Toronto police will step up patrols in the area in the wake of the incident.
“Due to the proximity to a school, I certainly understand the trauma and how traumatic this must have been for staff, students and parents, given the recent events that have happened in the United States,” he said.
The president of the Toronto Police Association said two officers were taken to the hospital for a “checkup to make sure they’re okay, considering the critical incident they were just involved in.”
“It’s very obviously impactful situation for anybody to be involved in,” said TPA president Jon Reid.