Fredericton shooting: Police say four dead, including two officers, suspect in custody - Canadanewsmedia
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Fredericton shooting: Police say four dead, including two officers, suspect in custody

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Graham Slaughter and Jackie Dunham, CTVNews.ca Staff</span>


Published Friday, August 10, 2018 7:42AM EDT


Last Updated Friday, August 10, 2018 3:49PM EDT

A mother of three and a father of four – both police officers – have been identified among four people killed in an early-morning shooting at a Fredericton apartment building.

Robb Costello, 45, served with Fredericton police for 20 years. He leaves behind a common-law partner and four children.

Costello’s common-law partner, Jackie McLean, told the Canadian Press she learned the devastating news this morning from a police inspector.

The second officer, 43-year-old Sarah Burns, was on the force for two years, police confirmed. She leaves behind three children and her husband.

The two other victims have only been identified by police as an adult man and woman.

A 48-year-old man from Fredericton was arrested in connection with the shooting, which broke out in a residential neighbourhood in the city’s north end. Police say the suspect is being treated for “serious injuries.”

“Please appreciate this is a difficult time for their families and our colleagues,” police said in the tweet.

The incident occurred in the area of Brookside Drive between Main Street and Ring Road at approximately 7 a.m. local time on Friday morning. Just after 11 a.m., police confirmed there was no further threat and that lockdowns in the area were no longer required.

“Police still have the crime scene contained, and will be working the investigation for some time,” police said.

Police also said the suspect in custody is being treated for “serious injuries” related to the shooting. The nature of his injuries is unclear.

Horizon Health Network said its Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital was treating “multiple victims” following the early morning shooting.

Reporting from the scene, CTV Atlantic’s Nick Moore said that police were escorting residents from their homes following the announcement that one suspect was in custody. He said it’s unclear if officers are searching for any other suspects, but that police said the area would be contained for the “foreseeable future” as the investigation is ongoing.

Between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m., Moore said there was a large police presence on Brookside Drive where officers appeared to be focused on a single residence.

“There is a police officer standing outside with a gun,” he told CTV’s Your Morning.

Moore said he heard approximately four gunshots within a five-minute timespan during that hour.

In a series of tweets about the incident, Fredericton police asked residents to avoid the area and stay inside their homes with the doors locked.

People standing outside the cordoned off area early Friday told Moore that they were instructed to vacate their homes while they were still in their pyjamas.

David MacCoubrey told the Canadian Press that it was shortly after 7 a.m. when he awoke to the sound of gunshots that sounded like they were "10 metres" from his bed in his apartment on Brookside Drive. He said he first heard three gunshots that woke him up and then heard as many as 17 more between that time and 8:30 a.m.

MacCoubrey, whose apartment complex has four buildings in a square, said it sounded as though gunshots were coming from the middle of the square. He said was sitting on the floor of his apartment away from the windows while police searched the complex.

Tim Morehouse also lives in the apartment complex and said he heard two gunshots and then another three. He said he heard someone yelling “Shut up! Shut up!” from outside. When he looked out of his window, Morehouse said he saw the body of a man lying on the ground in the back parking lot of 237 Brookside Dr.

After calling 911, Morehouse said he looked out the window again and saw two police officers on the ground.

Rachel LeBlanc was on her way to work at a daycare centre in the area when she saw police cars speed by. She told CTV News Channel that she heard four gunshots at approximately 7:30 a.m., as she arrived at the centre.

LeBlanc said the daycare centre is located “extremely close” to where the shooting occurred. She didn’t want to say how many children were currently inside the building with her, but she said a few children had already arrived before they realized what had happened.

LeBlanc said she called the police’s non-emergency line and was told by the dispatcher to go on lockdown at around 7:45 a.m. She said they plan to remain under lockdown until they have more information.

The daycare worker said she has already assured parents that their children are “very safe” and called the centre “secure.”

LeBlanc, who also lives in the area under lockdown, said she’s still processing the morning’s events.

“It happened right by my home,” she said. “Of course, I was calling my husband frantically telling him to lock the doors and my sister is actually in that location as well so it’s been very scary.”

The shooting is reminiscent of the deadly shooting rampage in Moncton, N.B. by a lone gunman that left three RCMP officers dead in 2014, LeBlanc said.

“I was thinking of Moncton, of course,” she said. “The girls here, we were talking about Moncton and how it felt so close to what happened there.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau offered his condolences to the victims’ families in a tweet on Friday morning.

“Awful news coming out of Fredericton. My heart goes out to everyone affected by this morning’s shooting. We’re following the situation closely,” he wrote.

New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant also tweeted about the shooting on Friday morning.

“On behalf of all New Brunswickers, I offer my condolences, thoughts and prayers to the victims and their families. During this difficult time, our thoughts are also with the courageous women and men on the front lines working to keep us safe,” he said.

Gallant also asked residents in the area to stay informed about the situation and follow the instructions of law enforcement officials.

With files from The Canadian Press

Fredericton police are continuing to share updates on Twitter:

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Protest camp coming down

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RCMP say they will enforce a court injunction today and remove Trans Mountain pipeline protesters who have been camped outside a Kinder Morgan terminal in Burnaby.

Police say in a release that large structures at the protest camp, known as Camp Cloud, will be dismantled and the area cleaned up. Officers began moving in on the camp this morning.

The release says police do not expect what they call violence or disorder while the injunction is being enforced.

Protesters said Monday that several members were prepared to protect a sacred fire that's been burning around the clock at the site, although the injunction specifically says it should be extinguished due to dry conditions.

The camp has grown since November from a single trailer to include a two-storey wooden structure, a cabin, an outdoor shower, more than a dozen tents and multiple vehicles and trailers.

On Friday, a B.C. Supreme Court judge granted the City of Burnaby an injunction ordering protesters to remove all structures, shelters and vehicles from the site outside a Kinder Morgan tank farm within 48 hours, but that deadline passed on Sunday.

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Winnipeggers slam Bernier for tweet about city park named for Pakistani leader

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Winnipeggers are condemning Conservative MP Maxime Bernier for using the naming of a community park in South Pointe as a way to criticize "extreme multiculturalism."

In a tweet, the former party leadership contender suggested it was an odd dichotomy that Victoria recently removed a statue of Canada's founder, and Winnipeg recently dedicated a park to Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of the modern state of Pakistan.

Bernier also argued the partition of India, which led to the creation of Pakistan in 1947, killed nearly one million people.

His remarks came Tuesday night, after Bernier's initial series of tweets on the weekend were roundly disparaged for stoking racist and xenophobic tensions.

Rashid Ahmed, a Pakistani university professor in Winnipeg, scoffed at the suggestion that more diversity and multiculturalism is somehow a form of extremism.

If "being loved by each other is extreme, that's fine," said Ahmed, who campaigned for the new name to city officials. "I'm happy with that word as extremism." 

Rashid Ahmed, a Pakistani university professor in Winnipeg, was part of the group that asked that the park be named after Muhammad Ali Jinnah. (Radio-Canada)

He said Bernier appears to be exploiting Islamophobia to rile up anti-immigrant sentiment. 

"Why do they only choose this name, this park, as the symbol for the division or the multiculturalism? Why not other parks all over Canada?"

In a followup tweet sent Monday, Bernier said his controversial tweets were not meant to trash diversity itself, but rather "ever more of it." Members of his party have tried to distance themselves from his remarks since the weekend.

"Something infinitely diverse has no core identity and ceases to exist," he tweeted.

Ontario Conservative Sen. Salma Ataullahjan, who is Pakistani-Canadian, said Maxime Bernier's latest tweet about the naming of a park in Winnipeg after the founder of the modern Pakistani state is offensive and an attempt to divide Canadians. (Salma Ataullahjan/Senate of Canada)

Conservative Ontario Sen. Salma Ataullahjan, who is Pakistani-Canadian, told CBC News that Bernier's remarks are not merely offensive — it's an attempt to divide Canadians of Pakistani origin from other Canadians.

"A lot of [Pakistani-Canadians] supported his leadership bid and instead of wishing them well on Pakistan Independence Day he tweets this out … He's just poking us in the eye for no reason."

The City of Winnipeg held a naming ceremony for the park in the city's south end this May. It is in honour of a revered figure in Pakistan who is called "Qaid e Azam," Urdu for "great leader."

Jinnah Park lies alongside a pond and includes a cricket field, play structure, swing set and benches. It is located south of Tim Sale Drive at Northern Lights Drive.

Local MP Terry Duguid was among those Wednesday to ask Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer to dismiss Bernier from caucus.

This new multicultural reality is reflected in our parks, our streets, our buildings, and I view that as a very, very positive thing.– Liberal MP Terry Duguid

"It's really unfortunate, these tweets and these comments by Maxime Bernier. They're very divisive. They're not helpful."

Duguid said Winnipeg has a history of naming places in support of their cultural communities, such as Dr. José Rizal Park, named after a Filipino hero, and Manila Road, based on the Philippines' capital city.

"This new multicultural reality is reflected in our parks, our streets, our buildings, and I view that as a very, very positive thing."

Scheer said in a statement late Wednesday that Bernier doesn't speak for his party on any issue.

"I disagree with politicians on the left and the right when they use identity politics to divide Canadians. I will not engage in this type of politics."

Scheer did not elaborate specifically on the tweet. A request from CBC News to both Scheer and Bernier about the Winnipeg tweet was not returned.

Coun. Janice Lukes (South Winnipeg-St. Norbert) said she was approached by the city's Pakistani community to name the park after one of their leaders.

She said the new name creates a broader understanding of Pakistan for other Canadians, while acknowledging the contributions of the Pakistanis already making a life in the city.

Winnipeg has more than 5,000 people of Pakistani origin, according to the 2016 census. A large contingent resides in the city's southern reaches.

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Toronto firefighters rescuing woman trapped on downtown crane

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Fire department workers are in the process of rescuing a woman inside the operator's compartment of a crane in downtown Toronto.

Emergency services were called to the construction site near the intersection of Dan Leckie Way and Lake Shore Boulevard West at around 6:30 a.m. ET.

Firefighters say they will attempt to speak to the woman first, then determine how to safely bring her down.

"They are going to go through their procedures to try to negotiate with her to get her down safely," said Acting Staff Sgt. Sean Cassidy of Toronto police.

The fire department's high-angle rescue squad is leading the operation.

"The crane boom actually hangs over, partially, onto the Gardiner Expressway, so there was some concern for her safety," Cassidy added.

It was not immediately clear how the woman scaled the crane.

It's the second such incident in 16 months in Toronto. In April 2017, a 23-year-old woman was rescued, and in January was granted an absolute discharge after pleading guilty to two mischief counts.

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