Officers who rushed to the scene of a deadly shooting in Fredericton likely saved the lives of others, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday as Canadians reeled from news of early-morning gunfire that claimed the lives of four people, including two members of the local police force. It's unclear at this time if there are more suspects.
After warning residents to remain in their homes with the doors locked, by about mid-morning they were able to declare that there was no longer any public threat.
The three others killed in the violence were Const. Robb Costello, a father of four, Const. Sara Burns, who was married with three children, and a woman whose identity has not yet been publicly confirmed.
Bill Henwood, whose funeral business is located inside the cordoned off area on Brookside Drive, said people sat in their cars or were just standing near the blockade of police and fire vehicles "hanging tight and waiting for word" for news.
Witnesses have said they heard as many as 15 to 20 shots.
Donavan said police did not contact her but she heard from someone else by noon that the lockdown had been lifted.
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He says three gunshots woke him up, and as many as 17 more were fired between then and around 8:30 a.m.
He said local police would be leading the investigation, suggesting there was no concern for national security.
"It sounded like the first one came from right outside my bedroom window".
"Every time I dealt with Constable Burns or Constable Costello, they were A1", Mr. Gaines said.
"We will not forget the two fallen police officers whose sacrifice no doubt saved lives and prevented even greater tragedy". "I was hoping for the two seconds that I was groggy that it was kids blowing off firecrackers".
"It's been a very hard day", Fredericton Police Chief Leanne Fitch told reporters Friday afternoon. Among the messages: "We love you our brothers and sisters in blue!"
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A field hospital has also been established near an evacuation centre catering to more than 500 people in the village of Tanjung . Muhamad Juanda, who narrowly escaped the mosque collapse, said 100 people were praying inside when the earth began to roll.
"On behalf of all New Brunswickers, I offer my condolences, thoughts and prayers to the victims and their families. We're following the situation closely", he said. "In this time of shock and grief, let us all protect their families", O'Brien said in a tweet Friday morning.
In an earlier tweet Goodale said he was "deeply concerned" about the shooting, and that RCMP is assisting. "I know there's not as much information as people would like, but it's for a reason, of course".
The circumstances of the shooting in Fredericton, about 75 kilometers (45 miles) from the border between Canada and the U.S. state of ME, were not immediately clear. Constables Eric Dubois and Darlene Goguen were also injured when Bourque went hunting police officers in a Moncton neighbourhood.
In 2016, there were 223 gun-related slayings in Canada, according to the BBC.
- With Michelle McQuigge and Gabriele Roy in Toronto and Aly Thomson and Keith Doucette in Halifax.
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