Ottawa police concerned young people resorting to ‘extreme’ amounts of violence
OTTAWA -- An Ottawa Police superintendent says young people are dying in Ottawa because they're resorting to an “extreme amount of violence."
Acting Supt. Carl Cartright made the comment as the investigation continues into the 14th homicide of 2021. Creflo Tansia, 18, of Ottawa was killed in a shooting on Murray Street near Beausoleil Drive in Lowertown Tuesday night.
Appearing on CTV Morning Live Thursday morning, Cartright was asked what is fuelling the rise in violence on Ottawa streets this year.
"The issue that's fuelling it is that we have young individuals who are willing to use the extreme amount of force to resolve their issue," said Cartright.
"I'm speaking in general to the systemic violence that we're seeing out there – whether it's by means of a firearm, whether it's by means of an edged object or a blunt object. We're seeing young people dying because they're resorting to extreme amount of violence, and that's what we need to get a hold of."
Cartright admits the prevalence of illegal firearms and the trafficking of firearms are an issue in Ottawa and across Canada, but the real issue is the violence Ottawa is seeing and those who are impacted.
"The population that are being generally impacted, not all our victims in Ottawa fit that description, but it's young individuals and that is the true tragedy here," said Cartright.
"They're children, they may not believe so but they are children. So we have Creflo Tansia, I will repeat his name because it needs to be said. He was a son, he was a loved one, people cared about him so we'll give him a voice."
Cartright says it's too early to speculate on a motive in the death of Tansia.
"What it is clearly, from the evidence that I know, is that an extreme amount of violence was used, where a life was lost without any reason."
Ottawa police will be speaking with Tansia's family and members of the community Thursday to hear their concerns and thoughts following his death.
"At the end of the day, whether this was related to any action that this young man may or may not have been involved, we need to put that on the backburner," said Cartright.
"The key is that he was 18-years-old, will never see his 19th birthday. For whatever reason his entire life was ahead of him, for some ridiculous reason, and it is ridiculous, he lost his life. We should get to the bottom of that."
There have been two homicides in Lowertown this summer. On July 4, L. Ndongozi Nkuzimana, also known as Tyson Loris or Tyson Ndongozi, died after a shooting in the area of Jules Morin Park near York Street and Beausoleil Drive.
There have been 14 homicides in Ottawa in 2021, up from eight homicides in the capital in 2020.
Police say eight people have been killed in shootings so far in 2021. Cartright concedes the rise in homicides is "serious."
"So that's an increase this year and we're doing our best to get a hold of it and to address the issue," said Cartright.
"Within the last 24 hours, we lost an 18-year-old young man and that's what the conversation needs to be. He may have believed he was an adult, but he was a child. Creflo Tansia lost his life and it is something that we should take very seriously."
Cartright says overall, Ottawa is a "fairly safe city."
"However, yes the spike in homicides and in violence is something that we should not overlook," said Cartright.
"We are still, overall, the city of Ottawa is a good city, it's a safe city to be. However, we are approaching numbers we have not seen in some time, and that should be worrisome for everyone."