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New photos released of suspects after Toronto area movie theatre sprayed with unknown aerosol


Police have released new photos of suspects believed to have sprayed an unknown substance into a group of approximately 200 moviegoers at a Vaughan, Ont. cinema.

York region police said the incident occurred at around 9:20 p.m. at the Cineplex near Highways 7 and 400.

According to investigators, patrons watching an Indian Hindi-language film began coughing after two suspects allegedly sprayed an "unknown, aerosol-based, irritating" substance inside the theatre.

“Two male suspects wearing masks and hoods had attended the cinema, entered the theatre after the movie began and then walked around and sprayed an unknown, aerosol-based, irritating substance into the air,” York Regional Police said in a news release issued Wednesday.

In video obtained by CTV News Toronto, members of the audience can be seen evacuating the theatre, some of whom can be heard coughing or sneezing. Several patrons were treated at the scene, but no serious injuries were reported, police said.

The suspects fled prior to the arrival of officers.

On Thursday, police issued a second release containing new photos of the suspects.

Suspect photos released by York region police. (YRP)

The first suspect is described as a Black male with a medium build and approximately five-feet, 10 inches tall. He was last seen wearing a black sweater, a black jacket with a white logo on the front right side, dark pants with a white stripe, and a black toque with a white logo on the front.

The second suspect is a male with brown skin, a medium build and approximately five-feet, eight inches tall. He was last seen wearing a black sweater with a red logo above white text on the front, dark pants, and brown boots.

Both suspects were wearing black masks at the time of the incident, police said.


Police said they are aware of two similar incidents at other theaters that night, both in the GTA. .

“Investigators are aware that there were two similar incidents at other movie theatres that same evening, with one in Brampton and one in Toronto. Our investigators are liaising with our neighbouring police partners about those incidents,” the news release continued.

Peel police spokesperson Const. Tyler Bell-Morena said the incident in Brampton was reported at around 7:40 p.m., and it occurred during the showing of the movie 'Silent Night.'

Toronto police could not confirm what film was playing in its jurisdiction.

"It is awfully coincidental that they took place all within the span of less than three hours on the same evening," Sgt. Clint Whitney told CP24 on Wednesday afternoon.

"So we are certainly looking into the possibility that these incidents are linked."

In a statement, Cineplex said it is working "closely with local authorities" who are investigating the incident.

"Our primary focus and commitment is the safety and well-being of our guests and our team," Michelle Saba, a spokesperson for Cineplex, said in a written statement. "We thank our teams for helping guests evacuate safely."

When asked if this is being investigated as a hate-motivated incident, Whitney told that the investigation is in its early stages.

“There is no obvious indication that this is a hate-motivated crime, but we have notified our Hate Crime Prevention Unit as a precaution and they will be involved in the investigation,” he said.

In the Thursday release, police said the areas in which the incidents took place are well-traveled by pedestrians and vehicular traffic and that they believe there were numerous witnesses present who may be able to assist with the investigation.

Anyone with information is being asked to contact York Regional Police at 1-866-876-5423, ext. 7441, or Crime Stoppers anonymously. Top Stories

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