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Sammy Yatim's family releases statement

Sammy Yatim, 18, died in hospital early Saturday after he was shot more than once during a standoff with police on a TTC streetcar. Joseph Nazar read this statement on behalf of the family.

See the full statement below:

We would like to thank the public for all their support and understanding at this time. As you can imagine our lives have been turned upside down since the unimaginable events that occurred in the early morning hours this past Saturday and the death of our beloved son Sammy. There are no good words or sentiments that we can express that will embody how we feel right now. We are heart-broken, confused and still in a state of shock. The outpouring of support that our family has received from Torontonians and the entire country has been tremendous. Thank you to all who have reached out to us and helped us shoulder this pain. We are living a nightmare we can’t seem to wake up from.

We want to thank Chief Bill Blair for reaching out to our family and appreciate all his is doing to ensure that this matter is being investigated thoroughly and judiciously. We trust in the Canadian justice system and we will seek justice for Sammy, as he, and all those concerned, are entitled to that at the very least. We expect that this matter will be investigated with the fullest measure of the law, so that incidents like this can be better managed and deescalated before such extreme use of force is ever exercised again. We want to be clear that we do not hold any ill will against the thousands of police officers who work to protect us each day. This is a tragedy for all involved.

The next few months will be very trying for us as our family adjusts to life without Sammy and wades through all the details and decisions that led to this senseless tragedy. While we know this is a very divisive issue, and one that needs to be addressed, but we would ask that at this time the media please extend our family some privacy and allow us our time to grieve. Sammy was our child, our brother and our friend – a young man with a full and purposeful life ahead of him. We need this time together as a family to share our memories of his laughter, his love and his unyielding optimism, and hopefully find some comfort in those memories.

Thank you and God Bless.