Shooting victim was leaving private party at Drake's restaurant when gunned down: police
Published Monday, May 21, 2018 6:15AM EDT Last Updated Monday, May 21, 2018 7:17PM EDT
A 28-year-old man shot dead in Toronto’s downtown core on Sunday had just left a private party at a restaurant owned by Canadian rapper Drake when he was ambushed by three gunmen, police tell CTV News Toronto.
Investigators said the victim left Pick 6ix, in the Yonge and Wellington streets area, with an unidentified woman wearing an orange or pink dress at around 9 p.m.
As they walked westbound on Wellington Street, toward where the man had parked his vehicle, a black four-door Honda Civic pulled out of nearby laneway and turned left onto the street.
The car drove eastbound in the wrong direction and made a quick U-turn before driving toward the man and woman.
Police tell CTV News Toronto that it’s possible someone in the restaurant notified the occupants of the vehicle that the victim had left, as the vehicle was idle in the laneway until that time.
“He was parked west of the shooting scene, so he had not completely made it to where his vehicle was parked before these individuals approached him,” Det. Sgt. Gary Giroux said.
“Somebody knew he was either leaving at that particular time or they knew where his car was parked and they were waiting in the general area.”
Two of the three suspects then jumped out of the car and each allegedly started to shoot at the man.
The man tried to get away, running down a ramp into an underground parking garage, but police say the suspects continued to pursue him.
“The driver of the Honda Civic is firing out the window at the deceased person as well, as are the two men who are now on foot,” Giroux said
It’s alleged the suspects fired “numerous shots” at the man before getting back into the car.
Though police would not confirm the exact number of gunshots, they said witnesses reported hearing anywhere between six and 13 gunshots that evening.
The suspect’s vehicle then reversed up the parking garage ramp and back onto Wellington Street where it headed westbound until it turned onto Bay Street, where it was last seen.
Twenty-eight-year-old Jaiden Jackson, of Toronto, was rushed to hospital in critical condition but did not survive.
Investigators believe Jackson was targeted and say he was known to police.
Giroux told CTV News Toronto that it’s unclear whether Jackson was invited to the “invitation-only” event or whether he was the guest of someone else invited.
Drake was at the restaurant for a couple hours on Sunday but Giroux said he does not know whether the award-winning rapper was there when the shooting occurred.
“It was a party for Drake,” Giroux said. “It was by invitation only but there were some guests who were permitted to come with individuals who weren’t invited.”
By Monday afternoon, Drake posted two pictures of himself and others at Pick 6ix on Instagram with the restaurant’s own account handle as the caption.
The brazen shooting left pedestrians in the busy area running in all directions, trying to escape the gunfire.
Bullet holes were visible in the wall of the parking garage’s exit ramp on Monday morning.
“About 9 o’clock I came out of the office and there was some shots fired right over there,” one man, who asked to remain anonymous, said. “There were some people running around the corner and I ran into the Fairmont.”
Another man said he tried to hide behind the pillars of a nearby building when he heard the shots ring out.
“I took cover behind the columns here and once we realized that there were several gunmen and lots of shots, we felt it was a pretty good idea to leave the area,” he said.
Giroux said investigators have retrieved good quality surveillance camera footage from the area and are reviewing it, but do not yet have a description of the suspects.
“We’re thinking of releasing it in the next few days,” he said.
Anyone with information about the investigation is being asked to call Toronto police or Crime Stoppers.