Islamic State claims responsibility for deadly shooting in Toronto

Geneva Stokes
July 25, 2018

Activity in the area had largely come to a halt after Faisal Hussain, 29, fired indiscriminately at pedestrians and restaurant patrons.

Thirteen other people, ranging in age between 17 and 59, were injured in the attack.

Hussain, 29, was found dead a short distance away after a shootout with police. Her children visit the area almost every night, she said, adding she's grieving for the families of those killed.

Debbie Oleson had already broken the news to her eight-year-old daughter, who enthusiastically recalled playing basketball with Julianna in the past.

"Her family has requested privacy during their time of grief", police said.

"It's really heartbreaking", Polly Horvay, an employee at BOGO Beauty Supply at the Toronto intersection of Chester Ave. and Danforth Ave., told Yahoo Canada News on Tuesday.

Kozis was involved in synchronised swimming, and her Markham Synchro Club issued a statement calling her "a handsome, aspiring athlete". "This is a traumatic event for many of us and we are committed to working through this in a thoughtful and responsive manner".

Cukier said former prime minister Stephen Harper's Conservative government eased controls with profound effect. "Senseless acts of violence like these leave an imprint on our communities and weigh heavy on our hearts".

"We heard a woman yell, 'Help!' My partner went outside the restaurant and the woman was right there".

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One of Donny Kozis' high school friends set up a GoFundMe page on Wednesday to raise money to support the family. Attempts at pushing through even moderate legislation, such as limiting assault weapons, have faltered as shooters repeatedly kill children in schools or murder dozens in incidents including the Las Vegas shooting and the Pulse nightclub attack.

Mourners have been visiting a memorial site on Danforth Avenue in Toronto to pay their respects following the deadly shooting on July 22, 2018. A statement from the group's Amaq agency, translated from Arabic, reads in part: "The person who carried out the attack on the city of Toronto in south-east Canada on Sunday evening is one of the soldiers of the Islamic State and he carried out the attack in response to calls for targeting citizens of the coalition countries".

In a statement issued a few hours after the claim was first published, Police Chief Mark Saunders said that while officers continue to examine "every investigative avenue", there is no evidence at this point to suggest that the gunman was inspired by ISIS.

Sunday's massacre left an 18-year-old woman and a 10-year-old girl dead and 13 others injured.

They said he had battled "severe mental health challenges, struggling with psychosis and depression his entire life". His family has since released a statement that expresses their horror and devastation at the events and offers their condolences to those suffering from the tragedy.

A police source said that Hussain's prior contact with authorities involved mental health problems.

John Tory, Toronto's mayor, said on Tuesday as the city council passed a motion to urge the federal and provincial government to enact the ban.

"Any time you have a legal market for civilians to own concealable firearms. there is always a possibility that those kinds of firearms purchased legally can flow into the hands of people who want to use them to commit carnage", he said.

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