5 people arrested after early-morning shooting at Toronto short-term rental

By Lucas Casaletto, The Canadian Press

Toronto police say they have arrested five people and recovered a gun after two bullets were allegedly shot through the wall of a condo into the unit next door.

Constable Caroline de Kloet says officers were called to the downtown building shortly before 3 a.m. on Tuesday for the sound of gunshots.

She alleges shots were fired through a wall into an adjacent unit.

Canadian Press journalist Lucas Timmons says he was asleep when he heard what sounded like a door slamming.

He says he got up after hearing a second loud bang and then found bullet holes through a picture frame and through his drier, with a bullet on the floor.

On Tuesday, Timmons shared shocking images of what transpired at the home, leading to a response from Toronto councilor, Joe Cressy, who said: “I believe strongly that incidents like this should never be allowed to happen.”

Cressy went on to say in a statement that unmanaged “ghost hotels” in short-term rentals need to stop.

“Toronto’s City Council has approved regulations for short-term rentals, including a clear ban on “ghost hotel” operations. The City’s bylaws permit short-term rentals (any rental that is less than 28 consecutive days) across the city in principal residences only. These bylaws are currently in the process of being implemented. I will continue to advocate for them to be proactively enforced, with an extra focus on buildings that have a high volume of serious complaints.

I am also calling, once again, on short-term rental companies to do the right thing and immediately de-list all non-compliant Toronto listings from their platforms, which would include all listings where the unit is not the owner’s primary residence. They can and should do this now. In light of these serious incidents, there is no justification for the delay.”

‘Fairbnb’, has since confirmed the shooting in a release obtained by CityNews.

“Today, Fairbnb Canada learned about yet another short-term rental related violent incident taking place in the ICE Tower at 12 York Street. Fortunately, no one was injured in this latest incident that took place in what is perhaps Toronto’s most notorious of ghost hotels.”

Toronto’s ICE towers have long been a hot spot of Airbnb activity in Toronto. Now that short-term rentals are regulated, and the vast majority of commercial short-term rentals in ghost hotel towers like 12 York Street are clearly violating those regulations, Fairbnb Canada is calling on the City to ensure that condo corporations do their part to follow City of Toronto bylaws.”

Fairbnb Canada released a report at the end of September, highlighting that dozens of condos in Toronto’s waterfront area were frequently rented throughout the Provincial Short-term rental ban that lasted from April to June.

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