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Still no arrests 1 year after TTC collector shot

A still from surveillance video of a robbery at Dupont subway station. Courtesy TORONTO POLICE.

Despite numerous tips from the public, no arrest has been made a year after a TTC fare collector was shot in an armed robbery at a subway station, police say.

“We’ve interviewed several people, tracked down numerous leads, and at this point we are no further ahead in this investigation,” Staff Insp. Mike Earl said at a news conference Tuesday.

William Anderson, then 52, was shot in the neck and shoulder at Dupont Station on Feb. 26, 2012, after refusing to hand over money to a robber.

Earl again asked for the public’s help in locating the suspect and a witness who tried to chase the person to a parking lot at Spadina and Macpherson avenues . The suspect then took off in a silver vehicle.

He said the case was a priority for police “because if they’re going to shoot a collector behind glass who else are they going shoot if something else triggers their mind.”

The suspect, who police say robbed the same station twice before wearing a mask and carrying a revolver in the left hand, demanded cash from Anderson. When he refused, the suspect walked away, then turned and fired three rounds into the collector booth.

Anderson’s wounds have healed, but he is still psychologically scarred by what happened and hasn’t returned to work, TTC CEO Andy Byford said.

Byford reiterated the TTC’s offer of a $25,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest and conviction.

“I still have a member of staff off duty whose physically better but still psychologically traumatized by what happened,” Byford said. “I never want to see that happen to a member of my staff again.”

Police still don’t know much about the suspect. Because the shooter was so covered up, the person could be a man or a woman. The suspect is described as 35-40, five feet two to five feet five, white, with a stout build and was wearing a black balaclava over his or her face at the time of the shooting.

Police believe the same suspect is responsible for two other armed heists at the same subway station that occurred in June and October of 2011.

Since the shooting, the TTC has taken steps to increase the safety of the collector booths.

Bullet-resistant glass is in the process of being installed, TTC spokesman Brad Ross said, and debit and credit machines are now in place at all stations to reduce the amount of cash on hand, Ross said.

The position of the closed-circuit TV monitors has also changed, so that the cameras are behind the collectors pointing at riders.

“As someone making a transaction, you will notice that you are being recorded,” he explained.

On average, two TTC employees are assaulted every day, the commission said.