WARNING: The video below shows an active shooting. While the video does not show anyone being struck, the footage could be disturbing to some viewers. Viewer discretion is advised.
Peel Regional Police have arrested two people in connection with two fatal shootings that took place last fall in Mississauga, including one that claimed the life of a 17-year-old boy.
On July 21, Peel Regional Police Chief Nishan Duraiappah, Inspector Martin Ottaway, and Deputy Chief Nick Milinovich appeared at a press conference to provide an update on what investigators say are two separate but related shootings.
Police say that at 6:15 pm on Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019, officers were called to an apartment building on Darcel Avenue in Mississauga to respond to reports of a shooting. According to police, six people were struck by bullets after several men entered the complex and opened fire on a group of males standing near the back of the building.
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Jonathan Davis, a Grade 12 student at Lincoln Alexander Secondary School, was struck and died at the scene.
Police say Davis was an innocent bystander.
“The Darcel shooting was absolutely horrifying,” Duraiappah told reporters, adding that over 141 rounds were fired in a highly-populated neighbourhood at a time when people were standing in line at an ice cream truck and children were playing nearby.
Police say that five additional victims with gunshot wounds were taken to hospital for their injuries, including a 13-year-old girl, a 16-year-old boy, two 17-year-old boys and a 50-year-old woman.
These victims have all since been discharged from the hospital.
Police said a Hyundai Santa Fe that was reportedly involved in the incident was recovered by OPP in Caledon. The vehicle, which police say was reported stolen in April 2019, had been lit on fire.
Milinovich called the shooting one of the most severe incidents in the history of Peel, adding that one person sustained life-altering injuries.
“It resulted in the tragic death of 17-year-old who had his life ahead of him and was stolen from his family,” Milinovich said.
Police say a second and related shooting occurred around 9:45 pm on Oct. 22, 2019, in the 410 and Derry Road East area in Mississauga. According to police, a group of suspects inside of a Nissan Sentra that was linked to the Darcel shooting opened fire on the occupants of a Chevrolet Cruze.
When emergency services arrived on scene, they discovered the body of 28-year-old Brampton man Giovanni Delahaye, who was killed in the shooting.
Police say Delahaye was the intended target of the shooting.
Three other victims who were riding in the vehicle were struck by gunfire, including a 28-year-old male, a 26-year-old woman and a 17-year-old youth. All were treated at local hospitals with serious injuries and later released.
Police say that further investigation revealed that the shooting is related to the incident that took place on Darcel Avenue.
Police say that the Sentra involved in the incident was also burned when it was discovered by the OPP in Caledon.
According to police, investigators have worked to speak with victims and witnesses, collect evidence and locate the suspects wanted in connection with the shootings. Now, two suspects have been arrested for their alleged involvement in the incidents.
Police say that on Thursday, July 16, 2020, Safeer Ahmad, a 19-year-old man from Mississauga, was arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit murder.
He was held for a bail hearing on Friday, July 17, 2020.
On Sunday, July 19, 2020, Jahvon Valdez, a 21-year-old man from Brampton, turned himself in to Peel Police and was charged with conspiracy to commit murder and unauthorized possession of a firearm.
He appeared in court on Monday, July 20, 2020.
“These egregious acts of violence shocked the community to the core and took Jonathan and Giovanni away from their family and friends. Our investigators worked relentlessly, and these arrests are a result of their commitment to ensuring that those responsible for these murders, and for injuring the other victims, are held accountable for their actions,” said Duraiappah.
Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie also spoke out about the arrests.
“Today, the Davis and Delahaye families are one step closer to receiving closure and the justice they so rightfully deserve. I want to thank Peel Police for their efforts to track down these criminals and hold them accountable. We will not tolerate gang violence in our city, and I’m confident that by working together with the community, Peel Police will identify anyone else that may be involved, and ensure they too are brought before the courts,” Crombie said in a statement.
Police told reporters that the shootings are gang-related and that a small group of individuals–whose gang affiliation they would not reveal–are responsible for a large number of gun-related incidents in the region.
“Both shootings targeted the same group of individuals,” Ottaway told reporters.
“There’s a history between the two groups and that was the catalyst for the incidents.”
Officers urged anyone with information about the incidents and outstanding suspects to come forward.
Anyone with any information is asked to call the Homicide and Missing Persons Bureau at 905- 453–2121, extension 3205.
Anonymous information may also be submitted by calling Peel Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or by visiting peelcrimestoppers.ca.