TORONTO (BBC News, CNN, Telegraph) – Alek Minassian, a 25-year-old driver charged with killing 10 people and injuring 14 more by ploughing a rental van into pedestrians in Toronto on Monday, April 23, appeared in court in the city.
Alek Minassian, a resident of the Richmond Hill suburb of Toronto, was charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder and 13 counts of attempted murder. Minassian wore a white jumpsuit, with a shaved head and his hands behind his back. He showed little emotion. He was read the charges and ordered to have no contact with surviving victims. He will return to court on May 10.
A man believed to be his father sat in the front row of the court and wept. Asked by reporters after the hearing if he had anything to say, the man, identified as Vahe Minassian, replied “sorry.”
The younger Minassian’s court appearance came shortly after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressed reporters in the city, calling the incident a “senseless attack and a horrific tragedy.”
The suspect was arrested several blocks from the scene of Monday’s attack, after a tense standoff with a police officer.
Police say Minassian was not previously known to authorities. Public safety minister Ralph Goodale said there “would appear to be no national security connections” and Canadian broadcaster CBC cited government officials as saying Minassian was not associated with any known terror groups.