Less than 12 hours into the new year, the city notched its first homicide of 2020 — and, not surprisingly, it was yet another shooting.
In the wake of a year that saw a record high of at least 484 shootings, Toronto Police say the latest gun murder occurred in Regent Park around 10:30 p.m. on New Year’s Day.
Officers responded to reports of “numerous gunshots heard” in the area of Oak and River Sts., just south of Gerrard St. E., and located two victims, Const. Caroline de Kloet said Thursday.
It’s believed the two men were sitting inside a Hyundai Sonata that was parked on Oak St. when a second vehicle pulled up and at least one, possibly more, shooters opened fire.
The driver’s side of the Hyundai was riddled with bullet holes and both men were hit.
The victims were rushed to hospital where one man died.
Police identified the deceased as 21-year-old Ahmed Yakot of Toronto.
The second victim is expected to survive.
One resident of the nearby highrise complex said he heard at least 10 shots ring out.
“I just basically looked out and about two minutes later I seen the cops coming down Gerrard St.,” recalled Joe, who didn’t give his last name.
Like many Toronto residents, he is troubled by the rise in gun violence in the city.
“It’s not good,” Joe said. “It’s getting worse.”
Shootings from vehicles, and into vehicles, have also become a disturbing trend over the last couple of years.
Police have so far released few details but they are looking for a dark-coloured sedan seen fleeing the area.
Investigators are reviewing security video from numerous area cameras — mounted at a nearby townhouse co-op, on the side of a variety store and on a condo building across the street — that may have captured the shooting or the suspect vehicle as it drove out onto River St.
“Additionally, police are asking local residents, businesses and drivers who may have security or dash-camera footage of the area or incident to contact investigators,” de Kloet said.
Anyone with information, or video, is asked to call the Homicide Unit at 416-808-7400 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
VICTIMS SHOT IN VEHICLES IN TORONTO IN 2019
— FEB. 9: Veronica Mrhova, 24, was shot to death as she sat in a Mercedes in an Etobicoke parking garage.
— MARCH 8: Nashwan Yonan, 32, pulled into a Petro Canada station for gas and was shot dead by a masked gunman who fled in an SUV.
— MAY 3: A man was seriously injured when a gunman in a vehicle opened fire on him as he stopped his car at a red light in Etobicoke.
— AUG. 7: Two men were seriously injured when dozens of shots were fired into a car in Flemington Park in broad daylight.
— AUG. 21: Abdikani Ismail, 33, was fatally shot in a Jeep Cherokee by a shooter in a second vehicle as he drove on Weston Rd. near Jane St.
— OCT. 19: Tresor Tresor Kininga, 36, was found shot dead behind the wheel of a vehicle in the city’s Swansea neighbourhood.
— DEC. 5: A man in his 20s was badly wounded by gunfire as he sat in a car parked at a North York townhouse complex.
— DEC. 7: Terrence Agtual, 28, was shot to death and two men were wounded while driving on Hwy. 410, between Steeles and Finch Aves., in Brampton.
— DEC. 27: Dominic Romal Kelly, 26, was fatally shot in a vehicle parked outside of a highrise in south Etobicoke.
VICTIMS SHOT DEAD IN VEHICLES IN TORONTO IN 2018
— JAN. 19: Terrel King Carr, 24, and Nasurdin Nasir, 26, were killed and two other men suffered wounds when a car was shot up at West Deane Park and Rabbit Ln. in Etobicoke.
— FEB. 11: Isahaq Omar, 36, was shot and tossed from an SUV at Burbank Dr. and Canary Cr. in North York.
— MAY 5: Christopher Reid, 38, was found fatally shot in his car on Longfield Rd., west of Kipling Ave., in Etobicoke.
— MAY 20: Mohammed Sahil Gharda, 17, was shot dead and another man injured while inside a vehicle at Milford Haven Dr. and Greenock Ave. in Scarborough.
— JULY 25: Kevin Boakye, 24, was gunned down in his vehicle while stopped at a red light at Duncanwoods Dr. and Islington Ave., north of Finch Ave. W.
— AUG. 22: Jermaine George Titus, 32, was killed while driving on Jane St., near Weston Rd., when a gunman opened fire from another vehicle.
— OCT. 11: Roy Zamora, 26, was found shot to death in his car on Camborne Ave., near Keele St. and Wilson Ave.
— DEC. 12: Jonathan Gayle-West, 29, of Oshawa, was found shot to death inside of a car that crashed into a tree on Islington Rd., just north of Dixon Rd.
— DEC. 18.: Lawrence Errol Joel John, 28, was shot dead as he and a woman sat in an SUV parked out front of a highrise near Jane At. and Finch Ave. W.
— DEC. 21: Cimran Farah, 20, was fatally shot and two other men wounded when a BMW was left riddled with bullet holes when gunfire erupted in a north Etobicoke strip mall parking lot.