A man shot and killed a Toronto traffic police officer while he was on lunch break and killed another person and injured three others Monday before police tracked the suspect down and killed him in a cemetery, officials said.
Authorities issued an emergency alert to phones saying they were investigating an active shooter following two shootings in Mississauga and Milton in the province of Ontario.
Toronto Police Chief James Ramer said Constable Andrew Hong of traffic services was shot at close range. Hong, 48, was a 22-year veteran of the force. The married father of two was in Mississauga participating in a joint training exercise with Peel and York regional police. “While on lunch break he was shot in an unprovoked, and may I say in an ambush attack, and succumbed to his injuries,” Peel Region Police Chief Nishan Duraiappa said.
“In the same incident a second victim suffered life altering injuries and is currently being treated.”
Duraiappa said the armed suspect then fled the scene in a black Jeep Cherokee. Shortly afterward in Milton, police received information of a shooting that resulted in one death and two others being wounded. He said the suspect then fled the scene and died after a police interaction at a cemetery in Hamilton, Ontario. Hamilton Police confirmed via Twitter that one person was taken into custody and pronounced deceased in connection with shooting investigations in Mississauga and Milton. Hamilton’s police chief said the suspect died in the Hamilton Cemetery. Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit has invoked its mandate at the scene of the death of the suspect. The unit gets involved when there is a death or serious injury involving police.
Police did not identify the deceased suspect. Police had said in the emergency alert to the public that they were looking for a stolen Black Jeep Cherokee and the suspect dressed in black with a construction vest.
“Like all Ontarians, I’m horrified by today’s senseless violence, including the killing of a Toronto police officer,” Ontario Premier Doug Ford said in a tweet. “I’m so grateful to law enforcement for bringing this situation to an end. May justice for those killed and injured be swift.”
Peel Regional Police Constable Heather Cannon later said the public safety alert is no longer in effect. “Today, we are sadly reminded of the danger our officers face on a daily basis as they work to keep us all safe,” Toronto Mayor John Tory said in a statement. “In the days ahead, I know Toronto residents will join me in supporting the Hong family and our entire policing community as they come together to mourn.”