Murder of Scarborough man was part of feud between housing complexes: police
Police say the “senseless” and “pointless” murder of a 24-year-old man in Scarborough’s Chester Le neighbourhood earlier this year was the result of an ongoing feud between residents of two adjacent housing complexes.
Samatar Farah was found dead on Chester Le Boulevard, near Finch Avenue East and Victoria Park Avenue, at around 8 a.m. on April 15.
Police were initially called to the scene at around 1:30 a.m. for reports of a shooting, but did not find any victims. It was only after a resident walked through the area several hours later when was Farah’s body spotted.
Speaking to reporters Thursday, Homicide Det. Jason Shankaran said the probe into Farah’s death led investigators to discover that a shooting occurred on the same block just two days earlier.
“I can’t speak specifically to the feud, to the specific nature of it, but what I can tell you is obviously these are two communities that are priority communities. Within these communities, there are individuals residing in both that had disagreements with each other,” he said.
Shankaran said that two suspects, who have since been apprehended, along with two who remain outstanding are all connected to the Parma Court housing complex.
Farah’s body was found on Chester Le Boulevard.
“From our investigation, the only thing Mr. Farah did was be a resident of Chester Lee Boulevard,” Shankaran said. “I wouldn’t say he was targeted but that the community of Chester Lee Boulevard was targeted by these individuals who came in from Parma Court seeking to exact some sort of vengeance for some perceived slight.”
In a statement, Farah’s sister called her brother “one of the good ones.”
“On April 15, our family became part of the many families who lost a loved one to a senseless murder,” the statement reads. “Samatar was 15 days into his 24th birthday and months from his graduation. He was loved by so many for his genuine and kind-hearted nature. He was a devoted son, brother, uncle, friend and partner."
Shankaran reiterated the family’s sentiments saying, “Farah was indeed one of the good guys.”
He added that Toronto police will be “diligent” in keeping the community from further harm related to this feud but assured residents of both buildings that the acts are committed by a “very small minority of people.”
“I’ve walked these communities myself as a uniformed officer. It’s common knowledge for police officers all over this city that it’s a very small percentage of people who cause problems and violence,” he said.
“It’s only by coming together that these people lose their power and lose their sway over others.”
On Thursday, after 11 different search warrants were executed in Toronto, Scarborough and Ottawa, police arrested two suspects identified as 20-year-old Taufiq Stanley and 25-year-old Trevor Barnett.
Stanley is facing a total of nine charges, including first-degree murder, attempted murder and possession of a firearm.
Barnett is facing three counts of attempted murder in connection with the shooting two days prior to Farah’s murder.
In addition to the arrests, police have issued two Canada-wide arrest warrants for suspects identified as 23-year-old Alexander Fountain and 23-year-old Shaquan McLean.
Fountain is wanted for three counts of attempted murder and one count of first-degree murder.
McLean is wanted for three counts of attempted murder.
“I ask Mr. Fountain and Mr. McLean to seek out counsel and turn yourselves in as soon as possible, not only for the safety of the communities but for the safety of yourselves as well,” Shankaran said.
“It’s not even tragic because tragic would mean he somehow had something to do with his own death, but he didn’t. It’s senseless and pointless. His life wasn’t senseless and pointless but the way he did was, and these individuals took his life and we will bring them to justice.”
Anyone with new information about the investigation is being asked to call police or Crime Stoppers.