SUDBURY -- Timmins police are investigating after an early morning assault with a weapon at a local motel sent two people to hospital.

It happened Wednesday morning at the Super 8 Motel on Algonquin Boulevard East.

Two people were injured in the incident and were treated at Timmins and District Hospital for non-life-threatening injuries.

Officers with the criminal investigations and forensics units are on scene.

"Public access to Super 8 Motel and Casey's Restaurant is restricted," said Marc Depatie, corporate communications coordinator for Timmins Police Service, in an email to CTV News.

Police said at least one suspect attacked the victims with an "edged weapon," before fleeing the scene. Police are searching for any leads on the assailant(s).

"This was an isolated incident, in terms of the fact that the persons who were assaulted and the person who committed the assault are known to each other," Depatie said at the scene.

Many recent assault cases involved domestic disputes that have been exacerbated by the isolation brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, he said. Overall, however, the number of assaults police have dealt with in 2020 have dropped compared to the same time last year.

Timmins police responded to 256 assault complaints between April 1, 2019, and Sept. 16, 2019. Of those, 166 resulted in assault charges.

In 2020, between April 1 and Sept. 16, police responded to 222 assaults with charges laid in 144 of those cases.

However, Depatie said there have been more cases of apparently unprovoked attacks that have police perplexed.

"We do take these persons into custody, providing them with an opportunity to explain the motivation behind their criminal act," Depatie said. "Most decline."

He stressed that a majority of assault cases lead to arrests and charges. He said drug addiction, homelessness and mental illness are contributing factors for many cases.

"These are chronic issues that the Timmins police are working on, alongside other like-minded community stakeholders ... in coming up with strategies that we hope are effective in (reducing) the amount of crime that is taking place."


-- With files from Sergio Arangio