Originally published August 10, 2018 at 9:27 a.m., updated August 10, 2018 at 12:40 p.m.
TORONTO (AP) — A shooting in a small Canadian city early today left four people dead, including two police officers, under circumstances that were not yet explained but struck a nerve in a country that has been roiled in recent months by several instances of mass violence.
People in Fredericton, the capital of New Brunswick in the eastern part of the country, said they heard as many as 20 gunshots after a confrontation that prompted police to initially cordon off a large section of the city with emergency vehicles and order residents to remain inside their homes and businesses.
Finally, after a tense period of waiting, authorities disclosed the toll: Among the four killed were two officers, a rare case of police killed in the line of duty in Canada. Their names were not released.
Authorities said one suspect was in custody and was being treated for serious injuries. The person's identity was not announced and no motive was disclosed. A news conference was planned for later today.
Several other victims were being treated at a regional hospital, but there were no immediate details on the nature of their injuries or their conditions.
"Our hearts are broken by the murder of our two brave police officers," Fredericton Mayor Mike O'Brien said in a tweet.
The entire province of New Brunswick had 11 homicides in 2016.
In Fredericton, a city of about 60,000 residents, people said they were stunned by the scene, which occurred as people were heading to work or dropping children at a day care center not far from the apartment complex where the shooting took place. "This is the first time I've even heard of any serious crime or violent crime in this city," said Travis Hrubeniuk, whose fiancee had just left their home when the sirens began.
FREDERICTON, New Brunswick (AP) — Police in the eastern Canadian city of Fredericton, New Brunswick said today that one suspect is in custody after at least four people were killed in a shooting.
Fredericton police are asking residents to avoid the area and stay in their homes, but the circumstances of the shooting are unclear.
Police were also asking people on Facebook not to use social media to report on police locations.
David MacCoubrey, who lives in Fredericton, said he heard about 20 shots and was hiding on his kitchen floor.
"I'm on my floor," he said in a phone interview. "The cops have come through my place. They have searched all the apartments in the building. It sounded like it started in the courtyard area."
He awoke in his apartment on Brookside Drive around 7 a.m. local time to the sound of three gunshots 33 feet (10 meters) from his bed.
MacCoubrey said his apartment complex has four buildings in a square, and it sounded like the shots were coming from the middle of the complex.
He said police have been searching the buildings, and he's been sitting away from windows.
"It's not something that happens here regularly," he said.
Travis Hrubeniuk said his fiancee had just left for work around 7:45 when he began hearing a steady stream of sirens.
Hrubeniuk said residents have been advised to stay inside with their doors locked. The quiet residential neighborhood, which has houses, grocery stores, a church and an elementary school, is the last place Hrubeniuk said he expected to encounter a dangerous situation.
"This is the first time I've even heard of any serious crime or violent crime in this city," he said.