Man dies after double stabbing at Canada's Wonderland
A young man was knifed to death and another suffered critical injuries in the parking lot of Canada’s Wonderland, after thousands of patrons began leaving one of the amusement park’s annual Halloween Haunt events early Sunday.
York Regional Police received a call around 12:30 a.m. and descended on Wonderland’s massive parking lot off Jane St., near Rutherford Rd., in Vaughan where they found two men with stab wounds.
One, a man in his 20s, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other was rushed to hospital with critical injuries.
Duty Insp. Rod Fraser couldn’t say if the victims had been in the park for the Halloween event which ran from 7 p.m. to midnight.
Canada’s Wonderland spokesman Dave Phillips said the incident took place on the parking lot’s outer edge and that there didn’t seem to be a connection between the stabbings and the night’s event.
Phillips said incoming visitors have to pass through metal detectors — a security measure put in place following the 2003 shooting death of a young Toronto man outside the park’s front gate shortly after closing. Phillips said visitors are also subject to bag checks.
Diana Ali, 32, who attended Saturday night’s Halloween Haunt with her sister, said the park was overcrowded, citing wait times for attractions as long as two hours. She also claimed to have witnessed some heated exchanges in the crowd and filed a complaint with the park.
“The park itself was completely over capacity,” Ali insisted. “I wouldn’t be surprised if the murder that took place that night had something to do with the fact that they were completely over capacity.”
She also said both she and her sister set off the metal detectors upon entering the park because of keys in their purses, but claims to have been waved through.
Phillips insisted the park was not over capacity, and said drawing a line between a possible heated exchange in the park and the stabbing is pure speculation.
“The park ... was busy, (but) it was not over crowded, (and) we have York Regional Police at the park, so if there were any issues with crowding they certainly would’ve been vocal in talking to our park management, which did not happen,” said Phillips.
He added it is fair to say that thousands were in the park that night.
Phillips wouldn’t share Saturday night’s attendance numbers, citing Cedar Fair, the park’s owner, being a competitive company.