Mark Saunders is condemning behavior which he has deemed ”dangerous” and ”reckless” and which he says could have led to ”extreme serious injuries”.
The Police Chief reacting to the unrest at Yonge and Dundas Square on Saturday night, when police responded to a call that someone had a gun in the area during the all night Nuit Blance arts event.
According to Saunders, ”when the officers arrived on scene to investigate, a fight broke out, during the course of that fight many people fled and trampled a young woman”.
A person was subsequently taken into custody and “at that point, the mood of the crowd changed,” Saunders said.
“We saw young people, many under the apparent influence of alcohol, or drugs become aggressive and threatening, people in the crowd started throwing bottles and other objects at police officers”.
Speaking at Toronto police headquarters on Wednesday morning, Saunders called the violence, which was caught on camera ”disturbing” and called for a discussion on what is appropriate behavior in public.
However he stated that he believed this to have been an isolated incident and refused to entertain the idea that the unrest was part of a broader disconnect between police and the public.
Saunders called on those in possession of video footage of the incident to come forward and present it to police so that those involved can be prosecuted.
He also moved to allay the fears of some, as the city gears up for the Blue Jays involvement in the playoffs.
Large crowds are expected on the streets of the city during the games, however the Chief says that the city has dealt with large scale sporting events in the past, including the world series and that the force is ”always ready”.