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Police kill man ‘carrying gun near school’

A man allegedly carrying a gun was shot dead by officers in a Toronto residential area

Several schools in Toronto, Canada have been placed under lockdown after police shot and killed a man who allegedly carried a gun in public. Authorities have provided few details about the deadly incident, which follows two mass shootings in the United States in recent days.

Toronto police responded to “reports of a man carrying a firearm” At approximately 1:30 p.m. local time Thursday, Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) said in a news release, adding only that there had been a “interaction” between two officers and the man before they opened fire, killing him instantly.

It is still unclear what caused the shooting. Although local officials said a long-barreled gun was found at the scene, they added that it was too early to say whether the man was wielding the gun when he was shot and that ‘An investigation is underway.

Some media suggested the suspect was elderly “in his late teens or early twenties”, and that witnesses heard three gunshots before seeing police attempt to revive the man.

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The shooting triggered varying levels of closures at at least five local schools, police said. A spokesperson for the Toronto school board noted that the school closest to the scene did not appear to be linked to the incident, and the board announced that the closures were lifted after about two hours.

Commenting at a press briefing later in the day, Toronto Police Chief James Ramer referred to two mass shootings in the United States this month, saying “Because of being so close to a school, I certainly understand the trauma and how traumatic it must have been for staff, students and parents given the two recent events that happened in the United States.”

Two days earlier, an armed teenager walked into a Texas elementary school and murdered 19 children and two adults, while another mass shooter in Buffalo, New York, killed 10 at a supermarket earlier this month.

Ramer did not elaborate on details of the case, saying he is “forbidden” to share the findings of provincial investigators, and ultimately spoke to reporters for only about 10 minutes. He noted that the incident was “isolated” and that there was no continued threat to the public, however.

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