A veteran Peel police officer is in stable condition after a man clad in a black trench coat pulled out a gun and shot him inside a Brampton courthouse Friday. The gunman, who remains unidentified, was fatally shot by Peel police and the province’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) has taken over the case.
Const. Mike Klarenbeek, 53, was providing security at the A. Grenville and William Davis courthouse at 7755 Hurontario St. when he was shot near the visitor screening area around 11 a.m.
Klarenbeek, who has been on the force for nearly 30 years, slumped to the ground clutching his chest, according to witness Anthony Chandra.
Chandra said the shooter had tried to get into the courthouse through a lawyer’s entrance before Klarenbeek tried to stop him and ask for identification.
“When the cop said ‘come here,’ he just started shooting,” Chandra said. “I thought it was a firecracker to be brutally honest.”
“He point blank shot him [the officer] right in the chest.”
Klarenbeek’s condition was first reported as critical, but in an update Peel police Staff Sgt. Dan Richardson said he was stable and surrounded by family and friends at Toronto’s Sunnybrook hospital.
Richardson described Klarenbeek as a “family man” and said the whole force let out of a sigh of relief when it was learned his injuries weren’t as serious as originally thought.
The SIU confirmed the gunman, a male from Brampton, died at the scene.
The courthouse was locked down as heavily armed ETF officers combed the premises.
There were initial reports of a second possible suspect, but Richardson later said police believe the gunman acted alone and that there were no “outstanding suspects.”
Workers in the courthouse recalled a terrifying scene.
“I thought ‘I’m going to die today’,” said lawyer Saadia Bokhari, who was in the first-floor cafeteria. “I didn’t hear the gunshot. I just saw the dead body.”
The SIU has assigned 15 investigators and three forensic investigators to the case.
Anyone who may have information regarding the case is asked to contact the lead investigator at (416) 622-1886 or (800) 787-8529 ext. 1886.
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