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14-year-old Boy Charged with Two First-Degree Murders in Connection to Etobicoke Mass Shooting

A 14-year-old boy is facing first-degree murder charges in connection with a shooting spree that killed two men and injured three others outside a school in Etobicoke, Ont., earlier this month.

Toronto police responded to reports of a “mass shooting” June 2 just before 11 p.m. in the parking lot behind North Albion Collegiate Institute where a group of nine men had gathered after a soccer game.

Two suspects got out of a vehicle and began shooting “indiscriminately” at the group of men before fleeing in a dark pickup truck, Detective-Sergeant Phillip Campbell said during a June 24 press conference.

Officers found five people on scene with gunshot wounds and provided first aid until paramedics arrived.

Delroy “George” Parkes, 61, of Woodstock, Ont., and Seymour Gibbs, 46, of Toronto were rushed to a trauma centre with life-threatening injuries, he said. Mr. Parkes died in hospital shortly after being admitted while Mr. Gibbs died of medical complications related to his injuries June 5.

The remaining three men were treated for non-life-threatening gunshot wounds but one remains in “very serious condition” and has injuries that he’s “going to be dealing with probably for the rest of his life,” Det.-Sgt. Campbell said.

“A lot of people are just devastated, completely devastated,” he added. “These senseless acts of violence have resulted in the deaths of two innocent people and families who will forever be devastated by the loss of their loved ones.”

There is no known connection between the men who were victimized and the suspects, Det.-Sgt. Campbell said, noting that the motive for the shooting is still unknown.

Suspect Arrested

A 14-year-old boy was taken into custody in connection with a stolen vehicle investigation on June 3, just a few hours after the shooting, police said.

The teen, who cannot be identified under the provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act, was fleeing from the vehicle at the time of his arrest.

Det.-Sgt. Campbell declined to say how the stolen vehicle was linked to the mass shooting or how police believed the youth to be connected to the killings.

The boy has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder for the deaths of Mr. Parkes and Mr. Gibbs and seven counts of attempted murder for the remaining victims.

Det.-Sgt. Campbell also declined to say if police had information about other suspects or if the incident was linked to auto theft or gang initiations, but added that police are certain some people in the community may know more than they are saying.

“This was a mass shooting in our city, and we now know there are likely individuals out there who can tell us the identities of the other people responsible for these murders,” he said. “I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention the seriousness of being an accessory to murder after the fact.”

Toronto Police 23 Division Superintendent Ron Taverner commended the community for its outpouring of support for the victims and their families, and called on anyone with information to come forward.

“We can’t do it alone,” Supt. Taverner said during the press conference. “Please help us solve this case and finish it.”

He called the shootings an “incredibly unbelievable act.”

“Just thinking about a 14-year-old involved in this kind of act is unbelievable in my mind,” he said. “There’s a lot of questions here that need to be answered.”

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