Police seek motive in cold-blooded killing of teen
Some neighbours say the victim of an execution-style shooting at a Chinatown restaurant this weekend was a good, friendly kid who was well-known in the area.
Tien Pham, 17, who lived in nearby Alexandra Park and went by the street name of Jeezy, died after someone walked into the Excellent Cantonese Seafood restaurant shortly after 3 a.m. Saturday and shot him once in the back of the head.
Pham had been sitting with a large group of friends at the time. He is Toronto's 28th homicide victim of 2010.
"This act is deliberate. It's to me calculated. This is not a wild shooting," Toronto Police Det. Peter Code told a news conference Monday.
"It's a simple act of a male walking into a restaurant, walking directly up to where Mr. Pham was sitting. There was a single shot that is applied at that time then the offender quite calmly turns around and walks out of the restaurant."
About 50 patrons fled the establishment, located at 263 Spadina Ave., while some remained to help the victim, he said.
The suspect, who made no attempt to conceal his face while in the restaurant, briskly walked to rear of the restaurant and left the same way he entered, Det. Code said.
Police are especially interested in hearing from business owners in the area who may have video footage of the nearby area including laneways.
A motive for the shooting has not been established. Police are checking into Pham's past to see if he has any enemies who might be responsible for his murder.
CTV Toronto's Austin Delaney said police wouldn't tell him if Pham was known to police. But he did learn the police guns and gangs task force has been brought into the investigation.
Police describe the suspect as a black man with a pale complexion who is 5'7, in his 20s, with a slim build and shaved head. He was wearing prescription glasses with white frames. He was wearing a dark, hooded sweatshirt and white running shoes at the time of the shooting.
Code said Pham was born in Vietnam and came here as a child. He said the victim's family is devastated by his murder.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-7400 or Crime Stoppers at (416) 222-8477.
With a report from CTV Toronto's Austin Delaney