and the C.W. Jefferys Massacre
The Canada eZine - Crime
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Boy killed in school shooting
Wednesday May 23rd 2007.
A 15-year-old boy who was shot at C.W. Jefferys Collegiate Institute this afternoon has died, police have confirmed.
The victim, Jordan Manners, was taken to Sunnybrook hospital with critical injuries after the shooting at 2:30 p.m. The Grade 9 student had suffered a gunshot wound to the chest.
Witnesses say there was a fight outside the school before the shooter followed the victim inside, where Jordan was shot.
The 848 students at the North York School, near Finch Ave. W. and Keele St., were in lockdown for several hours.
Just before 6 p.m., TTC buses arrived to begin evacuating students to a nearby school as C.W. Jefferys was being cleared bit by bit.
Police remained at the scene. There were no arrests. No gun had been recovered.
Police tape still surrounded the school at 8 p.m. and forensic investigators were expected to work into the night. The school was due to open again Thursday morning with grief counsellors called in to talk to students and staff.
Earlier, ETF officers went into the school with tear gas, crowbars and sledgehammers in the expectation that the gunman was still in the school, possibly trying to hide among the other students.
Police Chief Bill Blair arrived at the scene at about 5 p.m. and told reporters "this is a very serious matter."
The victim was found in school hallway, Blair said.
"It's shocking that such an event can take place in our schools," he told reporters.
Police at first responded to what was initially reported as a drowning at a pool near the school.
"Right now we’re scouring the school to make sure there is no risk to the students," Blair said.
He appealed for calm so police could do their jobs.
"We want to get those students out of the school and home safely," the police chief said.
"I have police officers in every hallway and every school room."
Meanwhile, at the hospital, a dramatic scene had played out earlier.
Shortly after 4 p.m.. a young woman came running out the emergency doors and collapsed, screaming and wailing, "No!."
A man in his 20s, wearing a ball cap, shouted "Get back inside."
About 10 minutes later, police in an unmarked car escorted two women to the emergency department at the hospital.
As one woman was going in, a male met her and told her, "He’s died, Mom."
The mother collapsed to the ground and the boy tried to pick her up.
Shortly after that, a man ran out of the emergency entrance, pushed a cameraman, and continued running around the building.
Two males were later handcuffed and led away.
In the afternoon, nervous parents arrived at the school awaiting word on their childrens’ safety.
A parent arrived and got her daughters on a cellphone.
"They just wanted to let the parents know that everybody is safe," said Victoria Zorzella, who was talking to her twin daughters Michelle and Monique, both 14, who were using someone else’s cellphone.
They were in the library with about 30 people.
In the hours after the shooting, several discussion groups popped up on the online network website Facebook.com, with students posting messages dedicated to the young victim.
"I just want to say R.I.P Jordan Manners. My thoughts go out to the family of the victim my prayers are with the family," wrote one blogger.
One of the victim's neighbours, who would only identify himself as Godfried, said in an interview that he was "shocked" to hear Jordan Manners had been shot.
"I spoke to him this morning and told him to keep up his grades," said the man, a former teacher. "He was an amazing handyman. He could tear apart and put together a bike in minutes."
The neighbour said Jordan was a gentle person and it was a "shame" that someone that he knew as so kind would meet such a tragic end. "The guy was so calm. That's what I don't understand about it."
Toronto mayor David Miller spoke out about the crime at about 5:30 p.m.
"I have met with so many mothers who have lost their sons to violence. It’s impossible to console a mother in those circumstances," he said.
The mayor said he shares the feeling with other council members that they no longer "want to look into the eyes of a parent and say, ‘you’ve lost a child.’"
Miller said it’s time to "redouble our efforts" to cut down on guns in the city. "They’re designed to kill," he said.
Education Minister Kathleen Wynne spoke out as well as an educator and a mother, calling it "a tragedy."
"My heart goes out to the family."
Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty offered his condolences to the families and friends of the victim.
"I also know I speak for all Ontarians when I condemn and deplore the violence we’ve seen here today," McGuinty said in a statement. "I want the entire community at C.W. Jefferys C.I. to know that they are in my thoughts and prayers at this difficult time."
The shooting comes a little more than a month after a gunman killed 32 people at Virginia Tech before taking his own life.
In September, a gunman at Montreal’s Dawson College killed a student and wounded 19 others before he died from police gunfire.
Timeline for shooting at C.W. Jefferys:
2:30 p.m.: Police respond to what they first think is a drowning. It’s a miscommunication.
2:38 p.m.: Police arrive to find boy shot in second floor of hallway at school and lockdown is ordered.
4:20 p.m.: Young woman in her late teens or early 20s exits emergency doors at Sunnybrook hospital, falls to the ground and begins wailing, "No, No, No." A young man in his late teens or early 20s, believed to be the victim’s brother, comes out and tells the girl to come back into the emergency room.
4:30 p.m.: Two women in their 30s or 40s, escorted by the police, arrive in an unmarked vehicle. The young man believed to be the brother of the victim exits the emergency doors and tells one of them, "He died, Mom." The woman collapses to the ground and is helped up by police and the young man.
4:35 p.m.: The same young man and another young male, who looks the same age, exit the emergency area, running past the TV cameras. The young man shoves one of the cameramen and tells that person to get "out of my face."
4:37 p.m.: Two boys run around to the side of the building, where they are handcuffed and led away.
4:50 p.m.: Police officer at 31 Division confirms the victim has died of gunshot wound to the chest.
6 p.m.: TTC buses arrive to evacuate students. Police stay behind to investigate.