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ETOBICOKE: Zaid Yousif and Michael Menjivar killed in fatal shooting

Zaid Yousif, 17, and Michael Menjivar, 15, shot and killed

CBC News Posted: Oct 07, 2014 8:06 AM ET Last Updated: Oct 07, 2014 4:08 PM ET

The two young males who died in a shooting near a school in northwest Toronto yesterday afternoon were high school students, a school board official confirmed today.

Friends and family have identified the slain Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School student as Zaid Yousif, 17. Friends of the second victim identified him as Michael Menjivar, 15, a student at James Cardinal McGuigan Catholic High School.

The shooting Monday happened behind an apartment building near two schools, in the area of Dixon Road and Islington Avenue, just after 12:30 p.m. ET. Both schools were put into either lockdown, or hold and secure mode.

Etobicoke.Double.Shooting.A double shooting that left two young males dead happened behind an apartment building near two schools, in the area of Dixon Road and Islington Avenue, just after 12:30 p.m. ET Monday. (Steven D’Souza/CBC)

“Today is really about mourning that loss of two young men, and offering support and prayers to the families and to the school community, and dealing with the aftermath of that tragic event,” said Angela Gauthier, director of the Toronto Catholic District School Board.

She stressed that the shooting was an isolated incident.

“We very much believe the school is a safe place,” Gauthier said.

“These are tragic events that can happen anywhere any time, and we will deal with it on that basis. Certainly there’s plenty of time for analysis and reflection after, and we’ll bring that to bear, but today is coming together as a Catholic community to offer our prayers and support.”

Gauthier said a grief support team, including social workers and psychologists, is on hand to help students and teachers.

3 suspects sought

Police are looking for three suspects in connection with the shooting, but haven’t released any further details. One person was taken into custody at the scene on Monday, but police did not describe the individual as a suspect.

‘There’s a growing feeling of insecurities and people not even wanting to send their kids to school because they feel unsafe in the system.’— Michelle Minott, Toronto District School Board trustee

Deputy Chief Peter Sloly told Metro Morning host Matt Galloway that the department is putting its top investigators on the case.

“We’re never tired of saying that Toronto is one of the safest cities in the world,” he said.

“But we don’t take any of that for granted because every act of victimization — particularly one so public, and so violent and so tragic involving so many young people — shakes our belief that things are getting better, despite the fact that they are getting better.”

Investigators are at the scene again Tuesday to conduct forensic work, interviewing witnesses and working to identify the suspects.

“We’ve put every single high-end resource from our best homicide teams, our best foot patrol teams, our best school resource officers at the disposal of the unit command,” Sloly said.

“We’ve had tremendous support from local witnesses, the local community, the school officials, and we’re anticipating some positive advances in that particular investigation.”

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