Lone gunman wanted in 'callous' downtown shooting that killed 1, injured 4
Published Tuesday, August 1, 2017 5:31AM EDT Last Updated Tuesday, August 1, 2017 7:42PM EDT
A single gunman is believed to be responsible for a “callous” fatal shooting at a downtown bar Monday night, Toronto police said.
The shooting unfolded at the Libertarian Public House, a bar located on the corner of Sherbourne and Queen streets, at around 11 p.m.
Less than a day after the deadly gunfire, investigators obtained and released security camera footage of the incident. They released it Tuesday morning in hopes of identifying the suspect.
In the footage, a male suspect walks into the bar through the front Queen Street entrance, walks past patrons and a bartender and toward a patio area at the rear of the building.
Gunfire erupts immediately as the suspect enters the patio section. The commotion causes the patrons to spill onto the floor and scatter in other directions.
A 32-year-old Toronto man died at the scene and four others were taken to hospital.
Det.-Sgt. Hank Idsinga told reporters Tuesday that the four others were treated for varying injuries, two of which were “very serious.” One remains in hospital today.
He said the victim who was fatally struck was “definitely targeted” but suggested the other three may have been innocent bystanders.
“When the shooting begins everyone starts to scramble. They try to hide under tables and what not. When gunman approaches the intended victim, he continues firing,” Idsinga said, adding that at least five to seven shots were fired.
“He’s obviously not in complete control of his firearm and some stray bullets are ricocheting and striking some of these other victims.”
Idsinga said the gunman appears to fire additional bullets at the victim once he falls to the floor.
“He’s probably ten-feet away from the target when he’s shooting but he ends up standing right over him and continues to fire,” he said.
While investigators believe some of the people on the patio that night are friends, Idsinga said their connection to the victim is not yet clear.
“We’re very lucky and knowing the location of some of the wounds, I would say we’re very lucky we don’t have three victims here,” he said.
“I don’t like overusing he word brazen but it’s definitely very callous and it’s hard to imagine, really.”
The suspect was last seen wearing a mask over his face and a dark coloured hoodie with the word ‘Hollister’ on it. Idsinga said the suspect’s hoodie appears white in the surveillance footage from inside the bar because the camera has infrared capabilities.
From there, police believe the suspect heads east on Queen Street East where he gets into a vehicle and continues in that direction.
While the details are scarce, Idsinga said investigators are working to confirm other descriptors and will release more information to the public as it becomes available.
“I do want to get the video out there. I want people to see what is happening and what has happened and hopefully motivate them to say, ‘This isn’t right, this shouldn’t be happening.’ Innocent people shouldn’t be getting struck by bullets when they’re simply having a drink at a local bar,” he said.
“If they recognize the shooter by the way he walks, by his clothing, if they have any information whatsoever, there’s lots of means they can use to contact Toronto police.”
The victim’s next of kin have been notified but Idsinga said police will not be releasing his name.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call police at 416-808-7400 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-8477).