Pickering Casino Resort has suspended business for a while, after an early morning Thanksgiving shooting took the life of a security guard. According to the Durham Regional Police, 34-year-old Michael Ferdinand became a victim of the shooting at the casino on Durham Live Avenue, in the Hwy. 401 and Church St. S. area. Police are looking for several male and female suspects.
As per Sgt. Joanne Bortoluss the police were called at the site after shots were fired around 5 a.m. Mr. Ferdinand who works at the recently launched casino was found at the scene suffering from gunshot wounds and was taken to a Toronto-area trauma centre. Unfortunately, he was not able to make it. Police are still investigating.
Casino Remains Closed Down
Corey Dalton, a representative for Unifor Canada and former president of Unifor Local 1090, issued a statement that he was devasted to learn of the senseless violence that occurred at his home workplace. He said that on Thanksgiving Mr. Ferdinand went to work and never returned home, while also extending condolences to everyone impacted by the incident.
According to the police, the casino and the hotel will remain closed down during the investigation, while guests of the hotel are allowed to stay in their rooms or leave if they decide to. Sgt. Bortoluss stated that the authorities are now appealing to anyone who can provide some information. She added they are cooperating with the casino, and reviewing surveillance video to catch the culprits.
She also told media outside of the property that the police are currently looking for multiple males and females who are reportedly involved in the incident and escaped the scene after the shooting. Lastly, she explained that the police will release any further information in relation to the suspects once it gets its hands on such intel.
Pickering Casino Resort also issued a statement. It read that it was devastated by the loss of Mr. Ferdinand and expressed its heartfelt condolences to the victim’s family and friends. The property’s focus is not to offer support to the victim’s close ones, along with guests and team members. It also works with law enforcement to find those responsible for this senseless act.
Working Since July 2021
Operated by one of Canada’s largest gambling operators, Great Canadian Entertainment, Pickering Casino Resort launched operations on July 26, 2021. After years of development, the property’s gaming floor touts over 2,400 slot machines, 100 live table games, as well as 10 dining options for patrons to enjoy. It opened in a limited capacity due to the then health protocols.
Fast-forwarding to January this year, the gambling resort also debuted its brand-new 275-room Pickering Casino Resort Hotel. It features over 275 premium guest rooms which vary from 388 square feet to 775 square feet. There are also 33 luxurious and spacious suites equipped with separate living spaces and 22 accessible rooms.
Source: Stevenson, Jane “‘SENSELESS VIOLENCE’: Pickering casino security guard killed in shooting” Toronto Sun, October 9, 2023