Project Borderline nets arrests

Police made several arrests for shoplifting and heroin possession last month after stepping up patrols along the eastern part of Danforth Avenue.

Called Project Borderline, the extra patrols involve not only police officers from 54 and 55 Division, but also licensing inspectors from the City of Toronto and agents with the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario.

The three-month pilot runs until December and covers an area stretching from Donlands Avenue to Dawes Road.

It is part of the police response to a string of high-profile stabbings and shootings along east Danforth that started two years ago.

Constable Jonathan Morrice, the crime prevention officer at 55 Division, says the main thrust of the project is to get more uniformed officers on the street.

City inspectors and AGCO agents are involved because several of the assaults and murders have occurred in or around Danforth bars, and because nearby residents have complained about late-night noise and public drunkenness.

“They have better teeth than us on some of the issues,” said Morrice, noting that the inspectors can prosecute non-criminal violations of city business licence and liquor licence rules that aim to prevent the over-serving of alcohol.

One bar is already facing charges after allegedly selling alcohol brought in illegally from the US, duty-free.

Local city councillors Paula Fletcher and Mary Fragedakis are also calling on city staff to do another review of the business licence for the Cloud Nine Café, a sheesha lounge formerly known as the Rotana Café that is just west of Danforth and Coxwell Avenues.

Earlier this summer, city inspectors charged the owner for operating without a business licence, but the café has been allowed to remain open under strict conditions.

In September 2013, Beach firefighter Dominic Parker was stabbed to death inside the Rotana Café. Last May, 21 year-old father Abdiweli Mohamed Yusuf was shot to death just outside it.

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