So just what were they planning and how many could have died?
The potential is alarming when you consider what cops found in a neighbourhood in the Tandridge Crescent and Albion Road area.
It was an "assault style" rifle designed for a war zone.
“It is believed to be a Ruger assault rifle but it will be checked out to confirm the model and if it was involved in previous crimes,” said a police source. “But what the hell it was doing hidden in a neighbourhood near a playground with children we are still working on.”
It’s the kind of deadly rifle that has been used in office, mall, theatre or school attacks in the past. Score a victory for pro-active policing.
Who knows who would have been on the receiving end of the fury it has the capability to deliver with an evil person pulling the trigger?
It’s a good product — for troops in a war zone.
So what is it doing in a Toronto neighbourhood?
Confirming the discovery, Toronto Police 23 Division Unit Commander Supt. Ron Taverner praised officers for finding it Friday night before Saturday’s community event.
“I shudder to think what could have happened or if a child discovered it,” he said.
It was actually a Toronto Police K9 dog and his handler who located it. The unloaded weapon was stealthily hidden under a tarp and police are investigating if it was there laying in wait for someone to come to it, if it was a form of storage or set up for someone to pick it up.
Whatever it was, it’s frightening.
But it’s not entirely surprising.
There have been 171 shooting occurrences in 2016. At this time in 2015 there had been 108. That’s about a 58% spike. There have been 239 shooting victims. Last year at this time there had been 172 and the year before there had been 98.
There has been 20 shooting murder victims in 2016 so far. At this time last year only nine people had been gunned down.
So getting this killing machine off the street will ensure it won’t be able to help add to the already disturbing stats.
But how many more like it are out there?
This year Toronto Police have seized more than 300 illegal guns from the streets.
Every gun in the hands of a criminal is scary. But an assault rifle positioned in a regular neighbourhood is off the charts concerning.
The Tandridge area has seen it’s share of shootings. Northwest Etobicoke has also seen cases of people shooting right into people’s houses.
I appreciate this assault rifle’s seizure being brought to my attention and that a picture was taken of it. I appreciate Supt. Taverner for verifying his officers found it on a routine sweep. I appreciate it because while statistics do indicate it is a war zone amongst gang members out there, none of that is illustrated better than with the image of a war-time assault weapon being found in a residential zone.
I also commend Chief Mark Saunders and his officers for aggressively trying to tackle the violence with the recent raids and sweeps — and not being influenced by activists spewing nonsense about racist police. Every potential victim saved is more important than satisfying political correctness.
This little incident, that would not make any statistic sheet or get any media coverage because no one is dead, is an example of police being police and preventing a tragedy.
This is what they do. Politicians should make sure pro-active policing and appropriate street checks are part of their tools.
If you have any doubt, take another look at that bloody gun.