hamilton landlord shooting

People are trying to blame Landlord and Tenant Board for Hamilton double murder

A grisly weekend double murder in Hamilton made world headlines after details emerged that the perpetrator allegedly killed two tenants renting a home he owned over the condition it was kept in.

The 57-year-old owner of the Hamilton rental home is alleged to have shot and killed his two tenants with legally-owned firearms in a dispute over the unit's upkeep, before himself being killed in a shootout following a standoff with police.

The context of the shooting has had a ripple effect across landlord social media groups and associations, including some very controversial takes.

Several Ontario property owners and landlord advocates have taken to social media to voice their thoughts on the crime, many of whom have chosen to deflect blame away from the landlord, and instead imply that renters or the Ontario Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) are in some way responsible.

One Twitter user rounded up a selection of what might be the worst comments on the shooting, found in private Facebook groups for landlords.

Among the four comments pulled from Facebook, one explicitly blames the LTB for the crime (which would be a stretch before even the most pro-landlord jury), while another comment insists that the man who fired the fatal shots should not bear any blame (once again, not an argument with any mileage in a court).

Varun Sriskanda, a self-described advocate "for the rights of housing providers," who has provided blogTO with commentary on landlord-tenant interactions in the past, is facing backlash after tweeting, "Landlords taking matters into their own hands is not something I encourage. But this is what happens when we don't have a functioning tribunal."

The since-deleted tweet from Sriskanda was met with an overwhelmingly negative response that includes a staggering 450 quote tweets as of writing, compared to just 136 likes.

hamilton landlord shooting

blogTO reached out to Sriskanda on Monday morning seeking further comment on his tweet and the ensuing response, however, minutes after the message was read, Sriskanda deleted the tweet.

Sriskanda also offered a statement to blogTO, clarifying his comments on Twitter.

"My deepest condolences, go out to all those that were affected by the tragic events that unfolded in Stoney Creek over the weekend," Sriskanda tells blogTO.

"Loved ones will need time to grieve. The community will need time to make sense of what has unfolded. Law enforcement will need time to do their investigation to determine what exactly happened here."

Still, Sriskanda doubles down on his implication of blame towards the LTB, saying that "In many instances, Ontario citizens reach out to organizations or law enforcement but due to excessive rules, requirements and wait times some situations grow to the point where early intervention may have prevented tragedy."

Lead photo by

Hamilton Police Service

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