The province’s police watchdog has been called in to investigate a double shooting in Toronto involving plainclothes police officers from Halton.
The Special Investigations Unit says a criminal defence lawyer was leaving his law office near Avenue Road and Bloor Street in an area known as The Annex just after 3:30 Tuesday afternoon when he was shot by a man in the office driveway.
Plainclothes Halton Regional Police officers were conducting surveillance in the area at the time.
The SIU says one of them shot the man who opened fire on the lawyer.
SIU officials say the 51-year-old man shot by the officers is in serious condition in hospital after undergoing surgery.
The 66-year-old lawyer is in another hospital recovering from gunshot wounds to his legs.
WATCH: Shooting in Toronto’s Annex neighbourhood leaves prominent lawyer with serious injuries
Toronto lawyer Clayton Ruby told Global News he believed J. Randall Barrs, whose website said he is a criminal defence lawyer with a “national reputation” in “high profile drug and murder cases,” was shot outside his law office.
“He’s a very prominent lawyer who defends drug cases,” Ruby said Tuesday afternoon.
“He’s a well-known lawyer, he’s appeared in the Supreme Court of Canada many times, he’s served at every level of court … he’s been around forever.”
Ruby said sources who knew the owner of the building that Barrs rents his office from believed he was the one who was shot. Barrs’ condition is not known at this time.
The SIU is an arms-length organization that investigates incidents involving police in which there have been deaths, injuries or allegations of sexual assault.
(with files from Adam Miller and Nick Westoll at Global News)