Two men are dead and another is in hospital after a shooting near Kensington Market early Friday morning.
It happened at an after-hours club above, but not affiliated with, Thymeless Bar & Grill on College Street, west of Spadina Avenue, after 5 a.m.
One man was pronounced dead on scene, the second died at St. Michael’s Hospital. A third man was also taken to St. Mike’s with serious injuries.
Police said a fourth person was injured but it may have happened as partygoers were fleeing the gunfire.
Police have not released the identity of the victims, but close friends identified the victims as former pro skateboarder Justin Bokma and Lefranc Matthews, a father of young kids who was operating the boozecan.
Bokma was reportedly working as a bouncer and was shot while trying to wrestle the gun away from the shooter.
“It appears there was some sort of confrontation in the establishment a number of shots were fired,” Det. Shawn Mahoney said.
“We believe there was minimum 30 people in there. And that’s part of my request standing here now, is asking any of the people that were at this location or attending this location earlier in the evening if they could contact us.”
Police are looking for two to three suspects.
Former councillor, now MP Adam Vaughan says these illegal, late-night bars have been a concern for many years in the neighbourhood — and they easily fly under the radar.
“There is a presence of probably half a dozen after-hours clubs that sort of pop up sporadically,” he told CityNews.
“They don’t operate in the way normal businesses do. You don’t know when they’re operating. It’s kind of a closed circuit of people. You talk to friends and say, ‘You know, there’s a spot opening up tonight.’”