Some police vehicles were vandalized during Raptors celebrations
Chris Fox, CP24.com
Published Friday, June 14, 2019 6:06AM EDT
Last Updated Friday, June 14, 2019 2:57PM EDT
Police say that there were no arrests as thousands of fans flooded the streets to celebrate the first NBA championship in Raptors franchise history overnight.
Supt. Michael Barsky tells CP24 that at least 10,000 people descended on the Yonge and Dundas streets area after the Raptors defeated the Golden State Warriors in Game 6 of the NBA finals late Thursday night.
He says that while two police cruisers, a bus shelter and several TPS special events buses were vandalized, celebrations were otherwise kept under control by the estimated 150 officers on scene.
Police are investigating a shooting that occurred near Yonge and Gould streets overnight, though it is unclear whether it is connected to the celebrations.
“All in all it was quite a good celebration. I know that there was damage done but nobody directly in Yonge-Dundas square was injured in any way,” Barsky said.
On Friday morning, several TTC special events buses that were parked on Yonge Street to contain the crowds could be seen with their windows smashed out and graffiti on them.
There was also a police cruiser parked near York and Harbour streets that had its windows smashed out and a dented roof.
Barsky, however, said that the damage was minimal given the size of the crowds.
He said that while there was probably 50 to 75 people who got “out of hand,” most people celebrated responsibly.
“They are really just property offences,” Barsky said. “Yes, some people got carried away but when you consider that there was probably in excess of 10,000 people in this square (it’s not that bad). There was no fights, there was no high tensions and there was no injuries in any way or form.”
A large police presence remained on hand overnight but officers were expected to clear the area at around 6:30 a.m.
Speaking with CP24 on Friday morning, Mayor John Tory said that despite some reports of vandalism, Raptors fans mostly celebrated “the Toronto way.
“Of all the people that were out there were no arrests. If you think about the fact that there were hundreds of thousands of people in the street we celebrated the Toronto way last night, which was great,” he said.
Tory's comments were echoed by Police Chief Mark Saunders, who said everybody was "fantastic" for the most part.
"We are talking about tens and tens of thousands of people that were celebrating and when you look at it from that framework, at the end of the day, everybody was fantastic for the most part," he said.
"Yeah, (there were) a few hiccups granted. People are overexcited and some people obviously got carried away with the moment but we are talking two police vehicles, two buses, and some glass broken here or there."
He said police will continue to investigate the vandalism and damage that was caused on Thursday night.
"People have been so cooperative throughout the series and when people do cross that line and do break the law, we will lay charges," Saunders said.
"With last night’s event, these things will be investigated and we will lay charges where we see appropriate."