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Calgary shooting: Toronto and Edmonton police now part of investigation

01/06/2015 05:46 EST | Updated 03/08/2015 05:59 EDT
Calgary police say the investigation into the New Year's Eve party shooting is getting assistance from authorities in Edmonton and Toronto.

Shots rang out in the early hours of Jan. 1 in the southwest Calgary community of Killarney. 

The gunfire killed Abdullahi Ahmed, 27, and injured six others — including one person who was just driving past the residence.

"The reality is that we work with other police agencies all the time. If there's any information we get that leads to our belief that there is connection to another jurisdiction then we'll follow up on that," said Calgary police Chief Rick Hanson. "In this case, there's information that's causing up to do follow-up." 

Police say they have learned that some guests at the New Year's Eve party were from Edmonton and Toronto.

Toronto police confirm that their guns and gangs unit is assisting Calgary police by providing information and background on guests believed to have been at the party.

"It's early into the investigation. It's only been a week, and I'm pleased to say that we are moving forward," said Hanson. "Part of the reason we can move forward now is folks are coming forward and talking to us."

Somali community mourning

Ahmed was a member of Calgary's Somali community.

Less than 24 hours after the New Year's shooting, another young Somali-Canadian named Murat Omar, was found dead in an alley in northwest Calgary. Police discovered the 23-year-old's body after responding to reports of gunfire.

An autopsy has been conducted, but the cause of death has not yet been released.

Calgary police say the two incidents are both believed to be targeted attacks, although they are not connected.

Local leaders from the Somali-Canadian community say they are heartbroken by the loss; however, more than 40 young Somali men have been killed in Alberta in recent years and leaders say there is a larger problem that needs to be addressed.

"This is a cultural problem. You lose your culture. It's a big thing and you can not get along with this culture so you're lost in between," said Mudhir Mohammed.

Family and community members are gathering tonight at a Calgary mosque to grieve, but also to begin a constructive dialogue about how they can deal with the issue of guns and violence within their community.

Community leaders are urging young people with information to work with police to help bring the perpetrators to justice

"Do it for you. Do it for Abdullahi. Do it for us. Do it for humanity. Be a person, speak up," said Imam Abdi Hersy.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Calgary police's diversity resources member at 403-428-8161 or Crime Stoppers.

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