The Police Association of Ontario says the deaths of two officers in a shooting in Innisfil this week have shaken police services across the country.
Association president Mark Baxter notes the deaths come a month after a Toronto police officer was shot dead while on break at a Mississauga coffee shop.
He says all three deaths highlight the risky nature of policing as a profession.
South Simcoe police have said that Const. Morgan Russell, 54, and Const. Devon Northrup, 33, died after a shooting Tuesday night at an Innisfil home after responding to a call about a disturbance.
Ontario’s police watchdog, which is investigating, has said a 22-year-old man also died in the shooting, which involved a third officer who exchanged gunfire with the young man.
The SIU confirmed on Thursday that both Const. Russell and Const. Northrup did not draw their firearms at the Innisfil home. An autopsy is set to take place today.
The SIU did not name the young man, but a source close to the investigation — who was not authorized to speak publicly — has identified him as Chris Doncaster.
The Department of National Defence confirmed Thursday that a man named Christopher Joseph Doncaster was a Canadian Armed Forces member from May to December 2020.
“He was a private with no deployment history and who did not complete basic training,” the department said.
Baxter, whose association advocates for police personnel across Ontario, has reminded South Simcoe police officers of the mental health and trauma supports available to them as they process what happened.
With files from Holly McKenzie-Sutter of The Canadian Press