//March 17 Swarming Incident

March 17 Swarming Incident

(Reprinted from the March 18, 2009 CityNews.ca article, Police Searching For Numerous Suspects After Series Of Violent Swarmings In Annex Area and video):

“Police believe the same group of ill-mannered hoodlums may be responsible for a series of violent swarmings that began in the early afternoon Tuesday and culminated with a bloody attack just after 11pm that left a man with serious stab wounds.

The first incident took place just before 2pm when a man was surrounded and robbed at Christie Pits Park.  At 5pm, a similar attack went down near the Spadina Subway station.  That was followed by incidents at Bloor and Lippincott, and the most serious at Bloor and Bathurst.

Police say the three victims in the last attack were heading to a bar on Bloor Street to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day when they unfortunately encountered a group of young men who were sitting on the stairs in front of Central Tech High School.

Before they knew it, they were surrounded.  There have been conflicting reports concerning how many suspects were involved, but it’s believed to be anywhere from 7-12 people.

“One of the victims was stabbed in the kidney, the other was pepper sprayed and the third struck with an object,” explained Sgt. Lisa Ferris.

The stabbing victim managed to stumble to his home nearby for help, leaving an ominous trail of blood behind. His initial condition was grave, but he has since improved and is expected to survive.

Neighbours in the area were understandably shaken.

“My husband was out last night celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with some buddies…so it could have been him,” said Cheryl Kaplan.

So far police only have vague descriptions of the attackers, but they are sifting through video surveillance footage and are hopeful that arrests will soon be made.”

The SVRA is working alongside the other local Residents’ Associations and Business Associations to request an increased police presence in the Annex area during at risk hours to prevent these incidents from recurring.