Eaton Centre reopens after deadly weekend shooting
Published Monday, June 4, 2012 3:43PM EDT
TORONTO - Stores at the Toronto Eaton Centre reopened to the public on Monday, less than two days after a violent shooting spree left one person dead and several others injured over the weekend.
Shoppers and tourists were welcomed back to the busy downtown shopping mall in the morning, many passing a growing memorial as they entered.
"You always think, ‘This time I was lucky, I wasn't there,' but next time you won't be," one shopper told CTV Toronto.
Other visitors said they refused to be scared away from the popular tourist attraction by a single violent incident -- a shooting that police referred to as the actions of "one idiot with a gun."
One suspect was taken into custody after he surrendered at a downtown police station early Monday morning. He appeared in a Toronto court shortly after 3:30 p.m. to face charges stemming from the violent attack in the mall's Urban Eatery.
The blood-stained food court remained closed to the public on Monday as police continued to investigate the fatal attack. It was scheduled to reopen on Tuesday.
"We are relieved that a suspect has been apprehended and commend Toronto Police Services for their thorough and quick investigation," Susan Allen, general manager of the Toronto Eaton Centre, told reporters at a press conference Monday afternoon.
"We would like to echo the sentiments of the police in pointing out that this was an isolated incident, although a tragic one, and remind our customers and tenants that Toronto Eaton Centre remains a safe and welcoming shopping destination.
"Our focus continues to be on resuming normal business operations."
Allen said the shopping centre conducts a review after every major incident, but noted that mall security acted "quickly and professionally under very extraordinary circumstances."
Retailer Michael Mayne confessed to feeling tense inside the mall on Monday, but said he thought the mall and city were both safe.
"I'm a little on the edge," Mayne told The Canadian Press. "If it's a gang-related situation, it doesn't stop there."
With files from CTV Toronto's Ashley Rowe