Toronto police kill man carrying a gun near schools

Officers fired after armed man confronted them, police chief said

Police officers at the scene where an armed man was shot, about 130 metres from a school in Toronto. Reuters
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Toronto police shot and killed a man who was carrying a gun near several city schools on Thursday afternoon, officials said.

The incident led to five nearby schools being placed under precautionary lockdowns.

Officers responded to a report of an armed man in the area and fired after the gunman confronted them, Toronto police chief James Ramer said at a media briefing.

He declined to give further details, citing a continuing investigation.

Earlier on Twitter, Toronto police said officers had fired and the gunman, described as a male in his late teens or early 20s, was wounded.

The scene where the man was shot by Toronto police is about 130 metres from the William G Davis Junior Public School, which was the last of the five schools to emerge from a lockdown.

All the school lockdowns were lifted after about two hours, according to the Toronto District School Board.

The incident occurred days after a gunman in Texas killed 19 children and two teachers at an elementary school. The Texas shooting fuelled concern about gun violence worldwide.

Toronto police have blocked about 300 metres of roadway near the scene while special investigations officers conduct their probe, according to a Reuters witness.

“I certainly understand the trauma and how traumatic this must have been for staff, students and parents, given the recent events that have happened in the United States,” Mr Ramer said.

He said Toronto police do not yet have all the details of the incident. “I don't want to speculate and suggest that it is something similar to what is happening in the United States,” he said.

The Texas school shooting on Tuesday was one of more than 200 mass shootings reported in the US in 2022, according to the Gun Violence Archive, a non-profit research group.

Canada's rate of firearm homicides is 0.5 per 100,000 people, far lower than the US rate of 4.12, according to a 2021 analysis by the University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation.

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Updated: May 27, 2022, 4:10 AM