It was a sunny, but bitterly cold day. A young man waited at the bus stop on Oakwood Avenue near Vaughan Road just after lunch. The bus approached. Stopped. The doors opened. The 17-year-old stepped on the bus.
And in seconds his life changed irrevocably. It was 1:19 in the afternoon.
The young man looked up as he boarded the bus at Ashbury Avenue and noticed three men that he knew. He walked to the back of the bus. Then he returned to the front of bus.
An argument began. Then a physical fight broke out. One of the men took out a handgun. A shot was fired. The 12 passengers on the bus sat frozen in their seats. Then they began phoning 9-1-1 using their cellphones.
What happened next is unclear.
But police putting together the scenario yesterday believe the bus then stopped. The young man and his assailants left the bus and continued their fight outside. The victim was then pistol-whipped. More shots were fired.
The young man was shot in the hip either on the bus or during the fight on the sidewalk. The assailants fled, splitting up and disappearing into the mostly residential neighbourhood. All that was left were some shell casings and the injured young man on the sidewalk, his life and hip torn in shreds.
Within minutes an ambulance and the police were on the scene. The young man was taken to hospital where he was treated for non life-threatening injuries.
The victim was cooperating fully, said Const. Tony Vella. “We’re doing our best to locate the three individuals as well as identify what has actually occurred on the scene and the sequence of events.” Vella said the police were looking for three men — all in their early 20s and all black.
At city hall, TTC chair Adam Giambrone called for calm and insisted the transit system is still safe. He said the TTC is providing police with video footage from cameras inside the bus.