4 injured in office knife attack

Four people are in hospital and one man is in custody following a stabbing this morning in a North Toronto office building.

The suspect, who is about 45, allegedly stabbed four former coworkers on the fifth floor of the Yonge Corporate Centre, at 4110 Yonge St., just north of York Mills Road. He was subdued and held for police, according to Det. Dan Darnbrough of 32 Division.

Published reports quoting police later identified the assailant as Chuang “Ray” Li, and said the incident took place as Li was in the process of being fired.

Toronto EMS spokeswoman Kim McKinnon said the call came in at 9:37 a.m. The victims were transported to a trauma centre.

She said a man and woman in their 30s sustained life-threatening injuries and two other men suffered serious but non-life-threatening injuries.

Police said the two men are believed to be in their 40s.

The two with life-threatening injuries remain in critical condition, Darnbrough said at about noon.

A statement released this afternoon by Ceridian, the parent company of Dayforce, whose employees were attacked, said four employees were “attacked by a former employee” and that the company is working closely with the police investigation.

Nicole Rooney, who works at an insurance company next door, said she was outside having a cigarette when emergency crews arrived.

“All of a sudden I hear the sirens coming and I see three police cars come, [and] all of a sudden they jump out of their cars and they have their guns drawn,” she said, visibly shaken by the incident. “Then three fire trucks, four ambulances, then five more cop cars, and I thought this is pretty serious.”

Rooney said she watched as EMS workers brought out a man on a stretcher, then a woman on a stretcher shortly afterward. She said everything seemed “surreal” as she caught a glimpse of the back of the suspect’s head as he was led out in handcuffs.

Mostly consisting of insurance and investment firms as well as companies in the health and science industry, the area is “very white collar” according to Rooney, who said nothing like this has happened in the five years she’s worked there.

“It’s a very quiet office complex,” she said. “I usually see raccoons running around and deer — it’s not a violent area.”

She headed back to work right after the incident, but had a hard time focusing, she said.

“I ended up leaving the meeting because I don’t really need to know about invoicing right now.”

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Posted: Apr 9 2014 4:45 pm
Filed in: NEWS
Edition: Toronto