10 killed as van plows into crowd on Toronto sidewalk
A van drove onto a crowded sidewalk in Toronto's Yonge Street yesterday, killing 10 people and injuring 15. The case hasn't been transferred to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, hence the motive likely isn't terrorism. But police said it "definitely looked deliberate." The suspect, 25-year-old Alek Misassian, was previously known to authorities, CNN said. He was nabbed 30 minutes after the breach.
PM Justin Trudeau offered condolences to victims and kin, and thanked first responders for their "courage and professionalism." "We are monitoring this situation closely, and will continue working with our law enforcement partners around the country to ensure the safety and security of all Canadians."
The incident happened around 1:30pm yesterday. Witnesses said he was heading south on the crowded Yonge Street when he suddenly hit the sidewalk and ran into pedestrians over several kilometers. Ali Shaker, who was driving nearby, said the van was moving through the crowd at nearly 50kmph. Most of the victims haven't been identified yet.
Witnesses described bloody scenes after the incident. Among them was Diego DeMatos, who was on his way to the gym when it happened. DeMatos told CNN he stopped to help a victim and was trying to save him, but "the guy...died in our arms." There were garbage cans and broken mailboxes strewn around. "It was like a scene from a war zone."
.@POTUS I are closely monitoring the attack on innocent people in Toronto this afternoon. We are with the Canadian people tonight as they grieve the loss of life injured. The American people stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our neighbors in Canada.— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) April 24, 2018
The incident occurred as ministers from major industrial countries were gathered in the country for discussions ahead of a G7 meeting scheduled near Quebec City in June. Toronto Police said earlier that "all available resources have been brought in to investigate this tragic situation." But for now, "there's nothing that has it to compromise the national security at this time," confirmed Police Chief Mark Saunders.