Murder Charges Laid in Danzig Shooting
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Murder Charges Laid in Danzig Shooting

Shaquan Mesquito, 18, faces multiple charges of murder and aggravated assault.

Shaquan Mesquito, 18, has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder, one count of attempted murder, 23 counts of aggravated assault, and one count of recklessly discharging a firearm, in connection with the shooting that took place at a Danzig Street block party this summer. Police have said that the shooting was the worst incident of gun crime in the city’s history. Killed were Shyanne Charles, 14, from Toronto, and Joshua Yasay, 23, from Ajax. Both were bystanders. Twenty-three other guests at the party were also injured

Mesquito, who appeared in court yesterday, had been charged in August with uttering threats and was already in custody when the new charges were laid. Police are asking the public to help them identify and locate two other males, both persons of interest in the case, so that they can ascertain what role, if any, they played in the shooting. Mesquito “is not solely responsible for the carnage that happened that day,” said homicide squad Staff Inspector Greg McLane at a press conference this morning.

The shooting appears to be the result of tensions between two rival gangs, say police: the Galloway Boys and the Malvern Crew. According to the sequence of events McLane described today, members of the Galloway Boys were present at the Danzig party, and eventually “took control” of it. They denied attendance to someone from the Malvern Crew, who returned with other members “to seek revenge. This resulted in a violent confrontation…that involved a number of firearms.” Mesquito is believed to be a member of the Malvern Crew.

“This was an attack on the perceived level of safety and security of the entire Danzig community,” McLane said, and that is why police are hoping more witnesses will step forward. “We’ve received cooperation from the public. We are hoping for more cooperation.” Specifically, the police are still trying to locate people who were responsible for checking guests for guns before they entered the party, to determine who turned the Malvern Crew away, and to speak with those Malvern Crew members.

One other man, Nahom Tzegazab, 19, was charged with reckless discharge of a firearm a few days after the shooting.

CORRECTION: 4:17 PM Toronto Police Service has just provided an updated list of charges. Shaquan Mesquito has been charged with 23 counts of aggravated assault, not 24 as they first announced.