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One Dead, Seven Injured After Shooting at Eaton Centre

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About half an hour ago, news of a possible shooting at Eaton Centre began flooding Twitter (it all started, oddly, with reports from Toronto Blue Jays player Brett Lawrie, who appears to have been on the scene). The Toronto Police Service hasn’t released any details yet, but TTC service between Bloor and Union stations has been suspended [UPDATE: June 3, 2012 Service is back to normal.] while emergency responders deal with the incident. We’ll post more details as we get them.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7 PM The TTC has announced that it is now diverting the 501 Queen streetcar around the Eaton Centre.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7:01 PM Police-scanner chatter indicates multiple victims, one of whom may be a pregnant woman whose water has broken.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7:05 PM Scanner chatter indicates the suspect is male, black, 27 years old, muscular, and possibly wearing a black hat.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7:10 PM Scanner description of a second suspect: Male, white, 30 to 40 years old, muscular build, short hair, wearing a black jacket and pants, and carrying a black handgun.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7:14 PM The TTC has announced that it is diverting the 505 Dundas streetcar around the Eaton Centre. The police appear to be evacuating employees from the mall.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7:18 PM CBC reports that a shooting has been confirmed by police.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7:23 PM Bystanders on the scene report a massive police presence.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7:23 PM Video from Twitvid user TJ shows a man being wheeled out of the Eaton Centre on a stretcher:

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7:45 PM The Toronto Star is reporting two injuries, one to a 13-year-old. The pregnant woman believed to have gone into labour, the Star says, was not injured.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 7:48 PM CP24 reports that the shooting happened in the Eaton Centre’s food court.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 8:11 PM Brian Tien Trinh, a Huffington Post intern who is tweeting from the scene, reports that “Yonge Street is slowly returning to normal.” Police tape is coming down, he writes, and traffic is moving on Yonge, past Dundas Street.

The scanner now says police are looking for five young men, all believed to be between 18 and 23 years old. Four of them are being described as black, and one is being described as white. The one police think might have been the shooter is said to have cornrows, and to be wearing a black zip-up hoodie with white lettering on it.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 8:45 PM From an interview conducted by Torontoist‘s Ryan Walker with John, an employee of The Source at the Eaton Centre, which is near the food court where the shootings reportedly happened:

“I was speaking with one of my employees when I heard two gunshots, followed by about eight to 10 more. I saw lots of people running up from downstairs, so I immediately got all the people in my store—customers and employees—to the back room. We were able to get our front gate closed, and then I directed all the customers through the back emergency hallways and up to the street-level exit. Once we had the customers out, I got my employees to grab their belongings…and also evacuate through the same route.”

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 9:11 PM 680 News is reporting that police have confirmed one death and seven injuries.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 9:17 PM CP24 reports that the shooter is still at large, and that police aren’t sure how many injuries are directly related to the shooting, and how many occurred during the subsequent rush for the exits.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 9:19 PM According to the scanner, Queen Street south of the Eaton Centre is now open for pedestrian and vehicle traffic.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 9:37 PM The Star reports that one of the surviving victims is in life-threatening condition, while two others are in critical condition.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 9:52 PM We’ve just added a few more pictures to the photo gallery at the top of the post. All were taken in the immediate aftermath of the shooting. Things have calmed down considerably since then.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 9:58 PM And CBC has a list of the victims’ ages and conditions. A 13-year-old boy is in critical condition.

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 10:07 PM The CBC also reports that Mayor Rob Ford was at the scene. They quote him as saying: “This incident tonight is absolutely terrible. We want to make sure these people are apprehended and arrested.”

UPDATE: June 2, 2012, 11:17 PM Here’s a final update before we call it a night.

The TTC has announced a return to normal service on the 505 Dundas streetcar line, meaning traffic on that street is flowing normally once again. Police Chief Bill Blair has weighed in on the situation. He suspects the man who died was the one targeted by the killer (or killers), and that the other injuries weren’t premeditated. Several police officers have told Torontoist that the mall will likely be closed tomorrow, and possibly on Monday. One police source says the body of the deceased is still inside the food court, as police continue to examine the crime scene. Subway trains are still bypassing Queen and Dundas stations. The New York Times has an article up.

We’ll have a more concise roundup of information for you tomorrow.

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