TORONTO — Authorities in Canada announced Tuesday that eight teenage girls had been charged in the stabbing death of a 59-year-old Toronto man.
Toronto Police said the girls, ranging from ages 13 to 16, were each charged with second-degree murder for what authorities described as a “swarming” attack
On Tuesday, Sgt. Terry Browne said during a police news conference that police were flagged down by a group of individuals about a reported assault that had occurred Sunday at approximately 12:17 a.m.
Browne said while working on the victim, authorities realized the man had suffered what were described as stab wounds.
The man was transported to a nearby hospital, where he later succumbed to his injuries, Browne said.
Browne told reporters that the victim had recently moved into the homeless shelter system but added that police weren't calling him homeless.
Authorities have not released the victim's name pending next of kin notification.
"As the investigation unfolded, it was learned very early on that these suspects involved in this were being described as eight young females, and as a result of quick work by officers in 52 division, these females were able to be located and apprehended," Browne said during the news conference.
Browne added that the suspects met each other through social media and came from various parts of the city.
"We do not know how or why they met on that evening and why the destination was downtown Toronto," Browne told reporters.
Browne told reporters that a number of weapons, which he did not identify, were also found with the girls.
He added that police wouldn't call them a gang but described the behavior the suspects allegedly participated in is be consistent with what authorities call "swarming," which is when multiple attackers target a victim simultaneously.
Browne said three of the suspects had prior contact with police.
He also revealed that the girls were in the area on Saturday by 10:30 p.m. and were possibly involved in an altercation earlier before the attack on the victim.
According to the news release, police said the suspects appeared in court on Sunday morning at Old City Hall.
Browne added the suspects were remanded into custody and would return to court on Dec. 29.