Police are investigating after shots were fired into the air within the heavily patrolled G20 traffic zone early Tuesday.
The brazen gunfire happened near the intersection of King Street West and John Street around 3:30 a.m. ET. Police recovered shell casings on the street. No one was injured.
Hundreds of police are stationed in the area and "there was a very rapid response" to a citizen's 911 call, said Toronto Police Sergeant Tim Burrows.
However, Sgt. Burrows said police do not believe the shooting is linked to the G20 summit, which begins on Saturday.
"It's not an uncommon occurrence in Toronto any more to get reports of shots fired on any given day or night. We often respond into the entertainment district. … This is realistically no different," he said. "There's nothing that indicates this is G20-related."
Officers saw a vehicle leaving the area heading westbound at a high rate of speed. Sgt. Burrows said investigators consider the car a "vehicle of interest" and do not know whether its occupants were involved in the shooting or simply wanted to escape after hearing gunfire.
A report suggested that more than a dozen off-duty RCMP officers witnessed the shooting and that police pursued the car to the city's west end, but Sgt. Burrows said he had not received confirmation that had happened.
Anti-G20 demonstrators, meanwhile, say they will be back in downtown Toronto Tuesday trying to be heard.
Hundreds of protesters shut down traffic in parts of the city Monday, marching through the streets while officers on bicycles moved alongside, blocking side streets as they passed by.
With a report from the Canadian Press
Get breaking news and analysis from the Globe throughout the G8/G20 by signing up for our free text message alerts or texting G20 to 123411. (Standard msg/data rates apply.)