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Published April 17, 2023

SIU says there's no grounds to charge officer who killed shooter at Vaughan condo

Seventy-three-year-old Francesco Villi killed five people
Ontario SIU crest

Ontario's police oversight agency says an officer who fatally shot a man who had killed five people at a condominium building should not face criminal charges.

In a news release Monday, the Special Investigations Unit says director Joseph Martino has determined there were no reasonable grounds to believe the York Regional Police officer committed a criminal offence and the file has been closed.

The SIU says that when one of the first officers responded to the condo complex in Vaughan, Ont., on Dec. 18 for a report of an active shooter, he located the man in one of the building's hallways.

The release says that when the man refused to drop his pistol and instead raised the hand holding the gun as if readying to point it at the officer, the officer discharged his weapon four times.

The man was struck, the release says, and despite officers administering first aid, he died at the scene.

Seventy-three-year-old Francesco Villi killed five people – three condo board members and two of their spouses – whose bodies were found on three different floors.

"There was no basis for proceeding with criminal charges in this case," the SIU release stated.

Court documents indicated Villi had a dispute with the condo board that went on for years, where he claimed there were issues with the electrical room below his unit that were affecting his health. But a judge rejected those claims, saying there was no evidence anything was wrong with the unit.

Villi also claimed members of the condo board had a conspiracy to "systematically murder" him, court documents showed, and he posted videos of board members and building staff to his social media accounts.

Residents of the building also said they found him threatening.

According to court documents, the condo board had sought to have the court force Villi to sell and vacate his unit as a penalty for being in contempt of an order to not contact the board, to stop threatening its members and building staff and to cease posting about them on social media.

The documents showed Villi was expected in court the day after the shooting. 

His three daughters also said in a written statement that he was a "controlling and abusive husband and father" who was estranged from his children.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 17, 2023.

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