Toronto police shoot 1 suspect, hunt for 2nd after botched robbery

Police are still trying to piece together what happened after a dramatic attempted bank robbery in Toronto's west end Saturday morning. One suspect was shot by police, while the other suspect is on the run.

'We do not know where this person went,' officer says after police surround west-end bank

Police are still trying to piece together what happened after a dramatic attempted bank robbery in Toronto's west end Saturday morning.

"There was a person with a gun that went into the bank and made a demand for cash," said Staff Insp. Michael Earl of the Toronto Police Service.

The attempted robbery happened shortly after 7 a.m. at the TD Canada Trust near The Queensway and Kipling Avenue. Witnesses in the area saw what was happening and called police.

One suspect managed to get away, while the other came face-to-face with police in the bank's parking lot, and was shot by police. The man, who is 30 years old, was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

The man who got away is described as a white man between 40 and 50 years old, and is thought to have fled the scene in a compact silver car before police arrived.

"We do not know where this person went," Earl said, adding the situation is cause for "public safety concern." 

Several employees were in bank at the time, which was scheduled to open at 8 a.m. None of the employees were injured.

Investigators are encouraging anyone who was in the area at about 7 a.m. to report anything suspicious.

The scene remained active throughout the day as police officers kept their weapons trained on the bank. The canine unit was also on the scene, and one witness said he spotted a police robot. 

Customers wait outside an Ikea store after police told nearby businesses to secure their properties. (Sara-christine Gemson/CBC)

Businesses were on lockdown

Businesses in the area were at one point told to secure their properties until the area was "deemed safe." Police cleared the area shortly after 11 a.m. The intersection was closed for much of the morning but has since reopened.

One witness, Michelle Merlin, was just starting work at a fitness centre across the street.

"I heard a loud sound and I came out to open the gym for members, and then I assumed it was a gunshot because I saw cars swerving," she said.

A nearby Ikea closed its doors and check-out lines. Customers already inside the store were told to use the self-serve check-outs. 

"I see at least 20 police officers," said one employee of a nearby business, who did not give his name. "We are staying away from windows to be safe."

It is not clear if the second suspect was also armed during the robbery, nor is it clear how the robbers got inside the bank. 

Police were unable to answer many questions because the province's Special Investigations Unit is now involved in the case. The SIU investigates anytime there is a death, serious injury or sexual assault allegation involving police. 


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