Safety, Security, and Crime Headlines


Toronto Star

Gang war at centre of bowling alley shooting, police documents show

Mar 20, 2018 5:49:08 PM

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The man gunned down in a Saturday bowling alley shooting, which also claimed the life of a bystander, is an alleged member of a gang feuding with a rival group in a conflict that may have put his father in the crossfire four years ago, a 2014 Toronto police document obtained by The Star shows.

Thanh Tien Ngo was shot to death at Playtime Bowl & Entertainment in North York on Saturday night. Three suspects are still on the loose, and two of them were armed when they chased down 32-year-old Ngo, police said.

A woman who was leaving the facility with her husband and sister was also shot outside. Ruma Amar, 29, died of her injuries at Sunnybrook Hospital on Saturday night. Her sister told the Star in an interview that she saw one masked man holding a gun.

Thanh Ngo was pronounced dead at the scene. He was allegedly a member of Chin Pac, a rival gang to the Asian Assassinz, a 2014 police document says.

Toronto Homicide Det. Rob Choe said the gunfire in Saturday’s shooting was intended for Thanh Ngo, and that Amar and he did not know each other.

But Thanh Ngo was known to police. In 2010, he was convicted of two trafficking charges, one count of possession of stolen property over $5,000, and failure to comply with a probation order, Oshawa court staff confirmed to the Star.

His father, Ngoc Ngo, was shot multiple times in an “execution style” killing after he answered the door at his Symington Ave. property, and he was pronounced dead at the scene in March 2014.

The elderly gardener and landscaper was at home with his wife and another relative at the time. Police did not specify who the other relation was.

“This is not a random killing. It is targeted by some perceived injustice by a 64-year-old gardener, or a mistaken identity where the shooter is just plain careless and has no regard for anyone else in that home or in the vicinity,” said then-homicide Det. Sgt. Pauline Gray in a 2014 press conference.

“I am having difficulty coming to a place in my investigation where a 64-year-old man living in his home, in his slippers, is a threat.”

At the time Gray said the bullets were “sprayed everywhere,” and that the alleged killers had no regard for whether there were other people in the home.

Two to six suspects fled the west-end neighbourhood in a dark van.

“Over the past few years, tensions have increased,” between the gangs and their respective allies, the 2014 police document says, citing control over illicit cocaine and heroin distribution networks as playing into those pressures.

“This conflict and continuing battle for control has erupted into running gun battles, stabbings, assaults and homicides,” it says.

The Asian Assassinz were one of two rival gangs (the other was Sic Thugs) subject to police raids known as Project RX and Battery in 2014, which saw more than 50 arrests in southern Ontario and the seizure of guns, cocaine, heroin, marijuana and large amounts of cash. Leading up to the raids, 30 others were arrested and 20 guns were seized during the year-long investigation.

Evidence uncovered in the raids linked the Asian Assassinz to three murders and several attempted murders.

The first was Thuan Nguyen killed in February 2013 outside of a Vietnamese after-hours locale; Vy Vy Restaurant and Lounge in North York. Police said he was shot five times in the parking lot, and pronounced dead at the scene.

Michael Nguyen was gunned down in the parking lot of Yorkdale Shopping Centre, in the second murder, in April 2013. The 23-year-old had alleged gang ties to the Asian Assassinz, the Star reported in 2013.

Two month’s after Michael Nguyen’s shooting, police found 27-year-old Byron Linares dead in his apartment near Yonge St. and Sheppard Ave.

“Shootings have occurred while the investigation has been underway, and I can tell you that at different points in the investigation we had to take action to disrupt future acts of violence,” Insp. Gordon Sneddon told the Star in 2014.

Employer claims accused killer of three was violent towards Ajax mother

Mar 20, 2018 7:27:11 PM

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In the weeks before she was killed, Krissy Pejcinovski had lost weight.

She was showing up to work looking tired and pale. Last month, she told her boss that her boyfriend had shoved her up against a wall and thrown her cellphone, the device breaking on impact.

Sherry Robinson, the owner of the spa where Pejcinovski worked for a decade, was worried. She told the Star she has several notes in her files of times she tried to talk to Pejcinovski about her relationship. What began as a sunny romance in late 2016, with the boyfriend moving in around March last year, had become rocky as of December.

Cory Fenn has been charged with three counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of Pejcinovski, her 15-year-old son Roy and her 13-year-old daughter Vana.

“You never knew what day you were getting,” Robinson said of their relationship, adding that she was thrilled when the pair broke up in February.

She said Fenn had gone back to the mother of his child.

“I told her, ‘He’s out. Change the locks on the door.’ ”

But just over a week ago, she said, he showed up again at the house. It was a Monday night. He said he wanted to move back in.

On Tuesday, Robinson said, Pejcinovski “told one of the girls here that she was going to tell him to get out.”

The next day, she didn’t show up for work. She didn’t answer any calls, and didn’t pick up her 16-year-old daughter Victoria for driver’s ed. After hearing from Victoria by text, Robinson sped over to the house, where she said Fenn answered the door. He was out of breath, Robinson said; there was blood under his arm, and on his foot.

Fenn wouldn’t let her see or speak to Pejcinovski, so she went back to her car and called the police. Minutes later, she noticed Fenn’s car was gone. She ran back up to the house, police on the line, pushing the still-ajar door open and yelling out: “Krissy, it’s Sherry, are you OK? Krissy?”

But she was met with silence.

When officers arrived, they found Pejcinovski and Roy inside, dead. Vana was found with life-threatening injuries and was rushed to hospital, but she died later that day. Robinson was taken to the police station to give a statement, but wasn’t told what was happening.

“Paramedics were coming, cop cars were coming from every which direction. I didn’t have a good feeling,” she said. Then, a text from her husband: there was a suspicious death on Hilling Dr.

Since that day, cards, donations for the family and arrangements of yellow lilies and daffodils have been brought to the quiet Ajax spa. Fresh blooms overwhelm multiple shelves and tables.

On Tuesday, an employee dialed up customers one by one, apologizing and rescheduling their Saturday appointments. The spa will be closed. It’s the day of the funeral. The service is set for 11 a.m. at St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church.

They’ve brought in grief counsellors for their staff, as well as some of Pejcinovski’s clients, who showed up at the spa in the days after the news broke. They all cried together, Robinson said. After 10 years, the people at the spa were like Pejcinovski’s family, since her own sister and mother were back home in Bulgaria.

“We’re struggling,” Robinson admitted, tearing up at points while she spoke about Pejcinovski. “You can’t, you can’t understand how something like this can happen.”

“She was so beautiful, so full of life . . . she just lit up a room when she came in.”

Pejcinovski was always there early in the mornings, and would warmly put an arm around clients to greet them. She would talk about how proud she was of her kids, pointing out her Victoria — who had started working at the spa about a year ago — to her clients when she passed.

She’d talk about Roy, and his love of hockey. She’d speak lovingly about her youngest, who Robinson said marched to the beat of her own drum. “Vana, she was just, she was a life force.”

Victoria, who was out of the house when the attack happened, is with her father now. Robinson and other spa staff have taken turns visiting her.

“She’s a teenage girl with lots of friends that are surrounding her to sort of get her through this. But she’s overwhelmed,” Robinson said, adding that she’s grateful Victoria has her father there.

A portrait of an unhealthy relationship was given, as well, by Ryan Furze — who told the Star he’d dated Pejcinovski for about four years. He described a relationship marked by jealousy, where Fenn “forced her not to talk to me or be friends and would always threaten me.”

And, while friends and family process their loss, Robinson hopes that other people — especially young women — can recognize signs of unhealthy relationships sooner.

“I just want people to know that she was a very strong woman,” Robinson said of Pejcinovski. “Domestic violence, unless you’re in it, then you just can’t understand. For Krissy, she just fell for the wrong person. She thought control of what she did was love.”

Doug Ford heads into first caucus meeting unsure if a PC government would run a deficit

Mar 20, 2018 2:41:12 PM

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PC Leader Doug Ford gave conflicting answers on whether he’d run a deficit if elected premier June 7 but pledged to put his family printing business into a trust as required by law.

Emerging from his first caucus meeting with Progressive Conservative MPPs on Tuesday — all but two of whom opposed his leadership bid — the former city councillor from Etobicoke said “we’ll have a better answer in a week or so” on his fiscal plans for Ontario and a platform for the spring election.

Ford said the meeting was “great” but didn’t reveal any details.

“I’m the type of guy, I can play a game of hockey, get in a little scuffle and then go out and have dinner with the person and drive him home. We’re a team. We can’t wait to take on (Premier) Kathleen Wynne and the Liberals.”

The PC campaign manager will be Kory Teneycke, a former communications director to prime minister Stephen Harper who went on to become a vice-president at the now defunct Sun News Network and later an executive at Quebecor.

Although he was critical of Wynne’s throne speech plan to run as much as an $8-billion deficit to expand pharmacare to seniors and fund more dental care in next Wednesday’s pre-election budget, Ford appeared unclear on whether a PC blueprint would contain red ink.

“It’s going to be balanced. We’re going to make sure we work on every single nickel to make sure it’s justified,” he told reporters in a brief scrum on his way into the two-hour meeting.

Asked later about a possible deficit, Ford replied: “Let’s take a look at it. I want to discuss that with our caucus.”

But Ford insisted he can “very easily” cut provincial spending and make promises, which, so far, have included lowering hospital wait times and electricity rates while finding about $6 billion in “efficiencies” he has not identified.

“There’s a lot of inefficiencies in the provincial government that we’ll be able to find,” boasted Ford, the brother of late Toronto mayor Rob Ford.

Under provincial law, Ford must place his interest in Deco Labels, a company co-founded by his father in 1962, into an arm’s-length trust if elected premier.

He has held a preliminary meeting with provincial integrity commissioner J. David Wake and has 60 days under the Members’ Integrity Act to make an initial filing of financial disclosure, listing all assets and liabilities for himself and wife Karla Ford — the same disclosure required of MPPs.

Should the Conservatives defeat Wynne, Ford would be required to put his business interests in a trust whose manager and structure must be approved by Wake, with Ford limited to getting quarterly statements on the value but not the nature of assets within the trust.

“I plan on sitting down with the integrity commissioner over the next couple of days,” he said.

The provincial integrity commissioner monitors the personal finances and business dealings of provincial politicians to avoid conflicts of interest, issuing annual reports that are available to the public.

Ford accused Wynne of campaigning for the June 7 election on the taxpayers’ dime with promises to come in the budget next week.

“That’s ridiculous. I’ve never seen that. We’re in debt up to our eyeballs, at $311 billion in debt, and she wants to lump another $8 billion into the deficit? That’s unacceptable.”

Ford, who was supposed to be introduced at a “unity rally” Monday night by his leadership rival and runner-up Christine Elliott, said he had no idea why that didn’t happen.

“I’m not too sure … you know something? I just showed up. So I’d have to get the answers on that.”

Elliott and fellow leadership candidates Caroline Mulroney, daughter of former prime minister Brian Mulroney, and social conservative Tanya Granic Allen joined hands on stage with Ford at the Etobicoke rally, but none spoke to the crowd of hundreds at an Etobicoke convention centre.

“Christine’s going to play an important role on our team, in our government,” Ford pledged.

CP24 News

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