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The Globe and Mail

Police still looking for suspects in North York shooting

The casket holding the remains of slain Toronto teacher and graduate student Abshir Hassan is carried out of a mosque after his funeral in Toronto on Friday.

Mark Blinch/The Globe and Mail

Police are canvassing the North York neighbourhood where a Toronto teacher was shot dead earlier this month in an effort to get more information about what happened.

The July 8 shooting killed 31-year-old Abshir Hassan and left two other people with injuries so severe they are still recovering in hospital.

Police say they haven't gotten enough information from witnesses to establish a motive or identify suspects.

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They are looking for two black men and a silver or grey four-door car, possibly a BMW. "This is a frustrating investigation," said Detective Sergeant Steve Ryan in the parking lot where the three victims were shot. "Third-hand information is even good at this stage."

Mr. Hassan, a substitute teacher who was an active member of the community and worked with troubled youth, was at a birthday party in his apartment building near Allen Road and Lawrence Avenue the night of the shooting. He went out into the parking lot to fetch something from his car when he and two other party guests – a 22-year-old man and an 18-year-old woman–were gunned down. Police say all three victims were active, contributing members of the community and they have no motive to indicate why they were targeted.

On Saturday, a dozen uniformed police officers knocked on doors in the area where the shooting occurred, handing out flyers with Mr. Hassan's photo and asking residents to come forward with any information. A field command truck was on site as well and police released surveillance footage of the vehicle they believe the shooters were driving.

"This is a crime that we, as a community, should be outraged by and we all need to step up and reinforce that message that this won't be tolerated in our neighbourhoods," Mr. Ryan said.

"We have the right to stand out on the porch and not be afraid, to enjoy a summer's night and not be afraid of flying bullets."

With files from Kate Hammer and Kat Sieniuc

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