Toronto police lay dozens of charges against boy, 15, for series of 'takeover-style' armed robberies

Toronto police say they've worked with officers in different jurisdictions to locate and charge a 15-year-old boy in connection with 15 different robberies in Toronto, Peel and Halton regions. (Robert Krbavac/CBC - image credit)
Toronto police say they've worked with officers in different jurisdictions to locate and charge a 15-year-old boy in connection with 15 different robberies in Toronto, Peel and Halton regions. (Robert Krbavac/CBC - image credit)

Toronto police have arrested and charged a 15-year-old boy from Toronto with 70 criminal offences in connection with 15 different robberies.

Officers from Toronto, Peel and Halton Regional Police say they've responded to 14 pharmacy robberies and one financial institution robbery allegedly committed by a group of boys between Sep. 3 and Nov. 21, a release issued Friday reads.

After a multi-jurisdictional investigation including York, Peel and Halton police, Toronto police say they issued a Criminal Code search warrant in relation to the investigation.

"During the search, the boy was located and taken into custody," the release reads.

Police say the boys traveled in stolen vehicles and committed a series of armed robberies. The boys would commit "takeover-style" robberies, police allege, by rushing in each store and making demands for narcotics and cash.

"At some incidents they used a handgun, some used a knife, and other suspects used physical violence to control any shoppers or employees inside the stores," the release reads.

In most of the pharmacy robberies, suspects obtained cash and narcotics, police say. However, they add, the boys left empty-handed upon robbing the financial institution.

At each robbery, police say the suspects left in a waiting vehicle and "made good" their escape.

The boy's identity cannot be released under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.

Toronto police told CBC Toronto the investigation is ongoing, and investigators anticipate further arrests with charges to come.

The boy was charged with:

  • Nine counts of robbery with a firearm.

  • Two counts of robbery with an offensive weapon.

  • Four counts of robbery.

  • 15 counts of disguise with intent.

  • Eight counts of unauthorized possession of a firearm.

  • Two counts of pointing a firearm.

  • Assault causing bodily harm.

  • Assault with a weapon.

  • Assault.

  • Uttering death threats.

  • 13 counts of conspiracy to commit an indictable offence.

  • 13 counts of possession of property obtained by crime.

Police say he was scheduled to appear in court for a bail hearing Thursday morning at Toronto West Court.