Two police officers killed in Ontario
Two police officers were killed Tuesday night in a shooting at a home that also claimed the life of a suspect in the small town of Innisfil, north of Toronto.
According to South Simcoe police on Wednesday, Constables Devon Northrup, 33, and Morgan Russel, 54, were called to a residence at approximately 8 p.m. for a routine call in connection with a uproar.
However, for a reason that remains mysterious, the intervention degenerated to the point that the occupant of the premises, a 23-year-old man, and the two officers opened fire. The suspect died at the scene, while the two officers died of their injuries in hospital.
South Simcoe Police Chief John Van Dyke was particularly shaken by the shooting.
“It’s personal to me. I went to police academy with Morgan 33 years ago. This is a heartbreaking moment for our police department,” he said, giving an update to local media.
With 33 years of experience with South Simcoe Police, Morgan Russel was on patrol and trained as a crisis negotiator. He leaves behind his wife and their two children.
His partner, Devon Northrup, worked for the South Simcoe police for six years. He was part of a police community unit and also worked with the police force’s mental health support team.
According to several local media, the suspect shot dead by the police is Chris Doncaster, a young man who shot down the house where the shooting took place with his grandparents.
A neighbor who requested anonymity described the young man to CTV News as « definitely a troubled kid. »
“I don’t know the details of what was going on behind closed doors, but it was very disturbing. I am disturbed by thinking about how these grandparents can feel vis-à-vis their grandson after all that happened in this house”, he continued.
Another neighbor, John Ridge, told CityNews that he was going to bed Tuesday night when he saw police cars speeding by, not realizing the tragedy that had just taken place. “I had just met the grandfather, a very good gentleman,” he confided.
Ontario Premier Doug Ford traveled to Innisfil in the afternoon to meet with members of the police department. “I am heartbroken to learn that two South Simcoe police officers were killed in the field. We pray for the families of these officers and for all officers who put their lives on the line to protect our communities,” he tweeted.
The Special Investigations Unit of Ontario has been mandated to try to shed light on the circumstances leading to the shooting.