From the breaking news desk: Aug 22 & 29

Photo by Alice Swanson

This is it. This is the final list of stories that I worked on in the Toronto Star radio room.

I trained some new interns on the 30th and 31st — forcing them to do real stories instead of practice stories — and it went really well. I’m especially proud of Manny and Noel who dealt with the Orangeville missing woman’s case, working well under pressure and calling neighbours and out-of-town police on the very first day. They ended up sharing a byline with Peter Edwards (Read the story here:  Missing woman may be linked to bloody crime scene) and were featured as top story on the website just hours into their first shift.

Training new interns reminds me of what it felt like to sit in the hot seat for the first time, wondering if some administrative error had led to my position. I’ve come a long way since then, and I’m so grateful to the Star for the opportunity. I’m going to do a “final thought” in a separate blog post, but for now I’ll note the biggest change in me.

I’m no longer compelled to qualify the word “reporter” by adding “student” or  “aspiring” before it.

This was the real deal.

Heat alert issued for Toronto
Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health has issued a heat alert as temperatures are expected to reach about 31°C on Sunday.

Officer injured while responding to false call
A police officer was injured while responding to a false 911 call in Wasaga Beach Saturday at around 2:15 a.m.

Firefighter in hospital after Burlington fire
Firefighters battled against a blaze that forced them out of a Burlington home early Sunday morning.

Mississauga cyclist clings to life after crash
A Mississauga man is in hospital with life-threatening injuries following a Sunday morning collision in Burlington.

Two women sexually assaulted hours apart
Police are investigating after two women were sexually assaulted in separate incidents on the weekend

Man shot dead by police
Fatal shooting in east end follows reports about a man with a knife (with files from me)

Dispute ends with man being shot
A young man was taken to hospital after suffering a gunshot wound to the buttocks early Sunday morning.

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From the breaking news desk: Aug 13 – 17

Image by Markus Rödder on Flickr

My latest list of news stories from the Toronto Star radio room.


Boy, 4, in hospital after fall from window

A 4-year-old boy is suffering from life-threatening injuries after falling from the second floor of a Brampton home.

Police officer shot during training exercise

A police officer is in hospital after he was accidentally shot in the leg at Toronto Police College in Etobicoke.

Whitby man and boy killed in Iowa crash

A Whitby man and his young passenger are among six people killed in a three-vehicle crash near Colfax, Iowa.

Man, 51, drowns in Lake Simcoe near Innisfil

Police divers pulled the body of a 51-year-old man from Lake Simcoe on Monday night after hours of searching.

Woman killed in crash on Highway 427

Police are investigating after a 22-year-old woman was killed in a rollover on Highway 427 near Dundas St. W.

Tornado, severe thunderstorm warnings roll through Ontario

Residents of several towns were nervously eyeing the skies Sunday for the deadly funnel clouds.

Police identify homicide victims

Police have identified the two Toronto men killed in a pair of unrelated homicides Saturday.

Security scare at prime minister’s house

Man sets liquid aflame outside 24 Sussex Dr. and is arrested.

Severe thunderstorm warnings cleared for Toronto and many GTA neighbours

Severe thunderstorm warnings for Toronto now have been cleared, but remain for parts of Durham and areas to the east.

Hilary Duff weds NHL player Mike Comrie

Actress Hilary Duff tied the knot on Saturday with Mike Comrie, a free agent hockey player who last played for the Edmonton Oilers.

CAW and Union Station staff reach new deal

Union Station railway workers, who had been on the brink of striking on Monday, have ratified a new three-year deal that includes higher wages and improved benefits.

Teens target delivery drivers in series of robberies

Five teens have been charged in connection with a series of robberies targeting fast food delivery drivers.

GTA salmonella cases spike, men in 20s hardest hit

The provincial health ministry is investigating a spike in salmonella cases; most appear to be clustered in the GTA and affecting young men.

Cyclist dies a month after fall

A 40-year-old cyclist has died of his injuries after falling from his bicycle July 15.

Taxi driver robbed, locked in trunk

Police are looking for a suspect who threatened a taxi driver with a knife and locked him in the vehicle’s trunk on Wednesday night.

Man wanted for currency exchange scam

Police are looking for a suspect who may be targeting the Chinese community in an online currency exchange scam.

Police in bumper cars chase on Hwy. 401

A pickup driver is expected to face numerous charges after leading police in a pursuit that stretched from the Oxford county area to Toronto on Friday.

From the breaking news desk: Aug 1 – 9

Aftermath of vegetarian food bank break-in. Image courtesy Joseph Malan

The latest collection of breaking news stories from the Toronto Star radio room, all authored by yours truly.

Food bank volunteers shocked at break-in

A food bank was hit in an early morning break-in near Midland Ave. and Ellesmere Rd. on Sunday morning.

Woman hit with hammer, sexually assaulted

A woman has been rushed to hospital after a violent sexual assault in the city’s west end.

Hamilton officer charged with on-duty theft

Hamilton police have arrested one of their own officers in connection with an on-duty theft investigation.

Woman arrested over cocaine-filled buttons

A woman has been arrested at Pearson airport after being caught with thousands of buttons containing cocaine.

Two men shot in daylight assault

Two men are suffering from gunshot wounds after being assaulted near Victoria Park and Danforth Aves on Saturday afternoon.

Man shot in the chest in city’s east end

A man was shot in the chest in the city’s east end on Thursday at around 10 p.m.

Boy dies days after being pulled from Mississauga pool

A 4-year-old child, who spent days in critical condition after being pulled from a Mississauga pool, has died.

Police find missing mom, 17, and newborn

Police are thanking the public for their assistance in the search for a 17-year-old mother and her two-week-old child.

Third teen charged in slaying of 17-year-old

Police have confirmed that a third teen has been arrested and charged in connection with the slaying of 17-year-old Andrew Dowden.

Two teens charged in slaying of 17-year-old

Police have arrested and charged two teen suspects wanted in connection with the slaying of 17-year-old Andrew Dowden.

Peterborough man charged in stabbing death of his mother

A 21-year-old man has been charged with the first degree murder of his mother, who was stabbed to death on Wednesday.

Police raid marijuana compassion club

Police have again raided a Queen St. compassion club that sells medical marijuana.

Man arrested after woman plunges from balcony

A woman believed to be in her 20s has been rushed to a trauma centre after falling from a balcony in North York.

Body discovered in the Beach

Police are investigating after a body was found in the Beach Tuesday afternoon.

Separate homicides leave three dead

Police are investigating after two men and a teenage boy were killed in separate incidents.

Toronto man dies after QEW crash

What began as a routine police response to erratic driving ended in the death of a Toronto man on the Queen Elizabeth Way near Hamilton on Sunday.

Welland Canal safe from ‘Frankenfish’

Reports that a Northern Snakehead fish was caught over the weekend are false

From the breaking news desk: July 29 – 31

The remains of a Dodge Caliber involved in a two-car collision in a quiet North York residential neighbourhood Saturday, July 31, 2010. The crash claimed the life of one man and left several others injured. CREDIT TORONTO STAR/STEVE RUSSELL

One dead, one arrested after ‘spectacular’ residential crash

Man not wearing seatbelt was ejected and killed; car looks like “it went through a war,” investigator says.

Toronto man charged with online luring

A Toronto man has been arrested in connection with internet luring charges involving a child in New Mexico.

Zero alcohol level for young drivers kicks in Sunday

Sunday at 12:01 a.m., it will become an offence for any driver 21 or under, regardless of licence class, to have a blood alcohol level above zero.

What’s open and closed this weekend

Here’s what to expect on the roads and shopping over the civic holiday.

Court officer charged with armed robbery

A civilian member of the Toronto Police Service has been charged with armed robbery following a home invasion in south Etobicoke.

Man shot dead in northwest Toronto

A man in his 20s is dead after being shot in the head on Friday at around 3 p.m.

Raw milk activist marks trial with operetta

Dairy farmer Michael Schmidt is milking his court victory by creating a comic operetta about access to raw milk.

Fifth arrest in Mississauga teen’s murder

Police have arrested a fifth suspect in connection with the shooting death of a Mississauga teen earlier this month.

Daylight shooting victim identified

Police are still looking for the person responsible for shooting a 26-year-old man on Friday afternoon near Sheppard and Jane.

Bystander acts quickly to aid a police officer

A passerby came to the aid of the police officer after a man became aggressive on Saturday at around 2:05 p.m.

Second weekend stabbing is the city’s 34th homicide

One man dead and two others arrested after separate stabbings this weekend.

From the breaking news desk: July 17 – 19

Photo by έŁέ¢τяøиί¢ έγέ on Flickr

Keeping cool in the world’s hottest spots

Think it’s sweaty in Toronto? Try taking a vacation to El Azizia, Libya. The small desert town has the distinction of dealing with the highest temperature ever on record.

A portion of Lawrence Ave. E. is closed as police from traffic services investigate.

Firefighter injured after lightning sparks fire on roof in Markham

A firefighter fell from a ladder and was injured while responding to the blaze

Two injured in separate overnight stabbings

Three suspects have been arrested in connection with a downtown stabbing; a second stabbing occurred in Scarborough.

1 dies in Hwy. 410 crash in Brampton

Two killed in highway collisions so far this weekend.

Pedestrians hospitalized after being hit by taxi

The victims, a man in his 50s and a woman in her 20s, are suffering serious injuries after being hit by a cab.

From the breaking news desk: July 9 – 12

Photo by dfinnecy on Flickr

It was a very grim series of shifts this time around. Many tragedies and close calls.
Here’s the latest list of breaking news stories that I authored.

Child choked by window blind cord
A 5-year-old Pickering boy is in critical but stable condition after getting tangled up in a cord attached to window blinds.

Dangerous sex offender may be hiding in Toronto
The 71-year-old fugitive is considered violent and at high risk to reoffend, according to police.

Toddler in hospital after being pulled from pond
The baby was pulled from a pond north of Ajax at around 10 a.m. Sunday.

School bus set ablaze in North York
The school bus was gutted by the flames, but nearby Zion Heights Junior High spared.

Human remains identified as Bracebridge woman
The remains of a 32-year-old woman were discovered at a cottage in Bracebridge on July 5.

2 Toronto men die in separate drownings
Police say a 31-year-old drowned in the Wasaga Beach area and an 84-year-old died in Gravenhurst.

Severe thunderstorm warning lifted for Toronto
Severe weather warning lifted for numerous regions in Southern Ontario, but warnings imposed again for London, Middlesex, Oxford and Brant.

Man drowns at Wasaga Beach
Natural bodies of water pose a greater risk to swimmers at all levels, according to the Lifesaving Society.

Police bust marijuana operation southeast of Peterborough
Officers from a tactics and rescue team found two men asleep and holding weapons as they entered the home.

Spot blackouts dim three Toronto neighbourhoods
A spokesperson for Toronto Hydro said more people than usual complained over the spot blackouts Friday.

Police believe that the woman is responsible for previous incidents of sewing needles being inserted into various brands of sausages.
Police release video of suspect wanted in car wash slaying
Images of a baseball-cap wearing suspect were captured by several cameras around the crime scene.
Marchers to protest G20 police actions; traffic delays expected
Activists plan to march along main streets from their meeting place at Queen’s Park to Simcoe Park at 2 p.m.
Markham man pleads guilty in collision that killed teen
The convicted 23-year-old faces two years in jail after rear-ending the 16-year-old driver of a minibike in 2009.