12-year-old, 17-year-old in critical and life-threatening condition after Toronto shooting

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Four youths have been injured, including two minors who are in life-threatening and critical condition, in a Saturday afternoon shooting in North York, Toronto police and paramedics say.

A 12-year-old boy is in critical condition and a 17-year-old boy is in life threatening condition, said Interim Police Chief James Ramer at a news conference late Saturday afternoon.

Ramer said police responded to calls about several gunshots in the area of Jane Street and Stong Court, north of Finch Avenue West, around 2:20 p.m.

They then located the 12-year-old on the west side of Jane Street, who had been shot. Raimer said the boy was at the "wrong place at the wrong time" and is an "innocent victim", adding that he was with his mother and they were shopping in the area when the child was shot. The mother was not injured.

Darek Zdzienicki/CBC News
Darek Zdzienicki/CBC News

He said the shooting began when two vehicles entered a parking lot at the intersection, and two occupants of one of the cars got out and started firing at the second vehicle, then chased it outside the parking lot and went eastbound on Stong Court, firing around 30 rounds.

Five people were in the car that was being shot at, and three were struck by bullets. Two males got back into their vehicle after firing the rounds and fled northbound, he said. Police do not have a description yet on the vehicle the suspects were driving.

Ramer also said the incident has "all the hallmarks of a gang-related shooting" the police chief said.

"It's just a brazen shooting," said Ramer.

The other two youth who were shot are in stable condition, and they were found in a location down the street, he said.

Officers remain at two locations in the area.

Both minors were transported to a trauma centre, according to Sandra McLeod, deputy commander of the Toronto Paramedic Services.

Darek Zdzienicki/CBC News
Darek Zdzienicki/CBC News

The other youth injured in the shooting are over 16 and both were taken to hospital with serious, but non-life threatening injuries, she said.

Members of the public were urged to avoid the intersection and contact Crime Stoppers with any information.

In a series of tweets Saturday evening, Mayor John Tory called the shooting of the 12-year-old boy an "absolute tragedy" and said that he spoke with Ramer, who assured him that officers are looking to solve this case quickly.

"It is infuriating and totally unacceptable that people continue to engage in brazen gun violence in our city and cities across Canada," said Tory. He emphasized that police need the public's help to identify the suspects.