Firearms charges laid in Raptors celebration shooting, but police still looking person of interest

The scene at Nathan Phillips Square while the crowd waits for the parade to arrive

Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders said three people are now facing firearms-related charges in connection to Monday's shooting at Nathan Phillips Square during the Raptors championship rally, but the search is on for a person of interest. 

Saunders told reporters at City Hall the goal is to lay more charges as the investigation develops. 

"We're not near where we want to be right now," he said, adding they're still appealing to witnesses to come to police with information and video. 

"You can't have two million people in that small space and say nobody saw anything," he said. 

The person of interest is described as white man between 5'9" and six feet tall, with short, light brown hair, as well as a heavy build wearing a white buttoned-down t-shirt. 

He was last seen running westbound on Queen St. 

Police have recovered two guns from the scene, but Saunders said so far the shell casings from the ground are not matching. 

"We know that there is potentially a firearm that is out there that was involved in this shooting," he said. 

Saunders said it's too early to say if it was a targeted attack and while the chief did not have an update on the conditions of the four people shot, reiterated they were all non-life-threatening injuries. 

The violence happened around 3:45 p.m. on the southeast corner of Nathan Phillips Square, causing people to rush out of the area, with several people getting tramped along the way. 


James Roblin had to get his girlfriend off the ground after she fell and was trampled with injuries to her back. 

"My main concern was I could see people coming on top of her, so I was trying to pull them off because she's a little bit lighter and screaming pretty badly," he said. 

There were many children and families getting caught in the stampede, crying in confusion as they didn't know what happened in the immediate aftermath. 

"Almost like a tsunami of bodies came running towards us," Chris Casmala said. "No one had any idea and it was just pushing and shoving and it was just pushing and trampling on top of people."