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Charges stayed against 2 men accused in November murder at Garden restaurant

Last Updated Jun 2, 2015 at 9:53 am EDT

Charges have been stayed against two men accused in a fatal shooting at a downtown Toronto restaurant last November after it seems they were identified incorrectly by police.

Tariq Mohammed, 31, was shot and killed at Garden Restaurant — on Dundas Street West near Bay Street — around 4 a.m. on Nov. 16, after he and his friend were targeted for his friend’s gold chains worth about $4,000. Two women had non-life-threatening injuries.

In January, police arrested Marcus Gibson, 22, and charged him with first-degree murder, armed robbery assault with a weapon, possession of a weapon, and failing to comply.

Ceyon Carrington, 28, was charged armed robbery, two counts of aggravated assault, and two counts of fail to comply.

At a court hearing on Monday, the Crown said that although it has grounds to lay charges, the case doesn’t meet standard of reasonable prospect of conviction at this point.

The Crown also said if the investigation eventually leads to evidence that meets the threshold required, then court proceedings against the two men could resume.

In response, defence lawyer John Struthers told the court it’s unfortunate the authorities can’t just admit when they made a mistake.

Gibson and Carrington, who are both fathers of young children, were in custody for five months.

They said they are both relieved to have the charges stayed, adding they were never even at the restaurant that night.

With files from Marianne Boucher