Stabbing reflects rising knife violence

The intersection where the Oct. 24 stabbing occurred near Humber North campus. (Photo: Chris Besik) The intersection where the Oct. 24 stabbing occurred near Humber North campus. (Photo: Chris Besik)

Chris Besik
Crime and Security Reporter

A recent stabbing near Humber College’s North campus has ignited concern of increasing knife crime.

Toronto Police said a man in his 20s was taken to hospital in grave condition after he was attacked near Humber College Boulevard and Humberline Drive, next to the Humber College North campus, around 8 p.m. Oct. 24.

The victim’s condition has since stabilized and police have one suspect in custody.

Humber’s security cameras provided police with some clues about the suspect, including the direction in which he fled, said Rob Kilfoyle, Head of Security Services and Emergency Management.

“We did manage to get some footage of who we believe to be the suspect fleeing the area through the parking lot down towards the playing field, that’s down below behind the campus,” he said.

One student who lives near the scene is concerned about the violent incident.

“I think after this event I’m definitely a lot more nervous about being in the area, especially when I am alone or its late,” said Daniela Bianconi, a 19-year-old second-year Commerce and Fashion Management student. “It’s scary that it happened so early in the night and in such a public area.”

Bianconi also notices a trend of violence in the area.

“There seems to be quite a lot of violence in the area which is definitely concerning,” said Bianconi. “Especially since I am a student living here, I would like to feel safe in my own neighbourhood.”

Mike Mildon, a 21-year-old second year Film Studies student, has similar feelings.

“For people like myself, who live in the area, it doesn’t make me feel too safe about my surroundings,” he said.

Toronto Police Crime Statistics have recorded 14 fatal stabbings as of Oct. 26, compared to 10 in the same time period last year. Those statistics are keeping pace with the year-to-date stabbing murder rate of 13 in 2013. All those numbers are dramatically higher than the four stabbings to-date in 2012.

Mark Loduca, a 19-year-old Brampton resident, remembers when he was targeted for a similar attack.

“You could tell it wasn’t a robbery. The guy grabbed my attention, when I turned he lunged at me with the blade,” said Loduca. “My adrenaline was racing. I ran down Richvale and didn’t stop, didn’t look back, I was gone.

“Everyone’s always concerned about gun control, they don’t realize how easy it is to get a knife,” he said.

Kilfoyle said violent incidents worry people when they occur near home, school or work.

“No one likes to hear about incidents like this,” he said. “People are generally cautious anyway, but I think whenever there’s something like this close to home it does make people reevaluate what they do for their own safety.”

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