Two men charged in fatal stabbing of 15-year-old boy at East York playground
Rachael D'Amore, CTV News Toronto
Published Tuesday, October 10, 2017 3:05PM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, October 10, 2017 6:28PM EDT
Two men are now facing charges in connection with the fatal stabbing of a 15-year-old boy at an East York playground over the weekend.
Police in Toronto were called to the playground of Stan Wadlow Park, near Cosburn and Woodbine avenues, shortly before 9 p.m. on Saturday for a reported stabbing in the area.
When they arrived, they found 15-year-old Isaiah Witt without vital signs.
He was rushed to a hospital’s trauma centre where he later died.
According to police, the teen, who attended nearby Wexford Collegiate School for the Arts, was with another teen when they were confronted by a group of people.
Both were stabbed during the confrontation, police say.
The second victim suffered serious injuries and was treated in hospital.
Student and staff at Wexford Collegiate faced a “somber” day today, said school principal Tom Lazarou.
“I would see him most mornings,” he said of Witt.
“Even when he was late for class, he would walk by and say hi to me.”
A friend of the teen, who did not want their name used, told CTV News Toronto that Witt was a selfless person who made time for others.
“Whether you knew him or not, he was always happy to help you,” the friend said.
“He didn’t deserve it. Nobody deserves it, but it happens. It’s really sad.”
The flag outside Wexford Collegiate have been lowered to half-mast in memory of Witt.
The school said grief counsellors were on hand today to speak with any students struggling to come to terms with the loss.
“As you can imagine, this is a very difficult time for all of us at Wexford,” Lazarou wrote in a letter sent to parents Tuesday.
“Isaiah was very well-liked and will be sorely missed by all our students and staff. He had a passion for fitness training and enjoyed playing the guitar. His peers describe him as outgoing, kind, caring and adorable. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.”
In the letter, Lazarou told parents that staff met this morning prior to classes to ensure “preparations and supports” were in place for students.
A book of condolences has also been made available for students to sign.
“No doubt, it will be very difficult for some of the students to come to terms with his death,” he wrote.
“We will endeavor to deal with the feelings and questions of the students as sensitively as possible.”
On Tuesday, police confirmed that two men had been charged, although at one point, as many as four people were arrested and questioned.
An 18-year-old man and a 19-year-old man have both since been charged with second-degree murder.
Investigators are looking to speak with anyone -- particularly those who were at the park that night -- about what happened. Anyone with information is asked to call Toronto police or Crime Stoppers.
A GoFundMe has also been set up in memory of the victim. As of Tuesday afternoon, it had raised more than $6,000.