Toronto

Homicide detectives getting more tips as Toronto ties murder record

There have been 89 homicides in Toronto this year, tying a grim record set in 1991. Amid the violence, police say more people are coming forward.

'We need those tips to come in, we need those calls to come in,' says Toronto police investigator

Acting Insp. Hank Idsinga says there's been an uptick in the number of tips police have received amid a spate of high-profile murders. (David Donnelly/CBC)

Toronto police have seen an uptick in tips from the public amid a surge of murders, a top investigator says.

There have been 89 homicides in Toronto this year, tying a grim record set in 1991.

Acting Insp. Hank Idsinga told CBC Radio's Metro Morning that while the city remains "extremely safe" when compared with other cities its size — Chicago, for example — there has been a string of killings dating back to last fall, many of them involving guns.

To solve those cases, including the most recent slaying of 22-year-old Yohannes Brhanu, Idsinga said police need information.

"We need those tips to come in, we need those calls to come in," he said.

You can listen to the full interview in the audio player below:

Yesterday, a 22-year old man was shot to death in a car. It was the city's 89th homicide this year -- which ties a record high set in 1991. Toronto Police Acting Inspector Hank Idsinga joins me to talk about the record number of homicides, the pervasiveness of guns, and how safe our city really is. 10:55

Idsinga said police are still battling a culture of people not talking to police, but those who have come forward are making a difference. He said police right now have put out what he believes is a record number of outstanding warrants in murder cases.

Still, Idsinga says he's alarmed by the number of guns on the street and the brazen way they're being used.

In Brhanu's death a number of weapons were fired multiple times.

"I don't think I've ever seen an incident where we've had five guns actually at the scene," Idsinga said.

"It's very disturbing."

With files from Metro Morning