Toronto van attack: Suspect charged with 10 counts of murder

The man suspected of deliberately driving a van into pedestrians along a busy street in Toronto was charged on Tuesday with 10 counts
of first-degree murder and 13 counts of attempted murder, the Toronto Star and other media reported.

Alek Minassian, arrested on Monday, made a brief appearance at a Toronto court and was remanded to custody. His next hearing
has been scheduled for May 10.

Anguished Toronto residents were trying to come to terms with a carnage caused by the curb-jumping van that left 10 dead and 15 injured on the sidewalk of the busy Yonge Street on Monday afternoon.

Five of the injured are in a critical condition and another two are in a serious condition, hospital sources said.

The Toronto Police have opened a hotline for witnesses to send any important information they wish to share with police on the incident which happened on Yonge Street and Finch Avenue East around 1 pm.

A witness told CTV News that the van mounted the curb at high speed and started knocking down pedestrians one by one for 25 minutes.
On a video, the van driver, who was arrested at 1.29 pm, was telling police to shoot him in the head.

Minassian has no criminal record and the incident does not appear to be related to terrorism. He was a student at Seneca College in North York where the attack took place.

However, Toronto police said the rampage “definitely looked deliberate.” They have blocked access to Minassian’s home in Richmond Hill.

A witness told Toronto Star that he was driving on Yonge Street around 1.10 pm when he saw a white van tearing down the sidewalk, hitting a newspaper stand and then a fire hydrant. To his horror, next he saw a pedestrian fly into the air after being hit by the van. He said the van was speeding approximately at 70 km/hour.

Most pedestrians did not notice the van approaching as they were moving in the same direction as the vehicle.