Toronto van attack suspect's Facebook post linked to anti-women ideology

Toronto police are still trying to piece together the motive behind the van attack that left 10 people dead and wheth...

Posted: Apr 25, 2018 1:53 PM
Updated: Apr 25, 2018 1:53 PM

Toronto police are still trying to piece together the motive behind the van attack that left 10 people dead and whether the suspect's frustrations with women contributed to the rampage.

Sgt. Graham Gibson, a homicide detective with the Toronto police, said the victims in the attack are "predominately female," but there's no evidence that suspect Alek Minassian was bypassing men or deliberately targeting women.

Minutes before carrying out the rampage, the 25-year-old posted on Facebook what appears to be a message praising a man who vowed to "destroy" women who rejected him.

"All hail the Supreme Gentleman Elliot Rodger!" reads the post. The accolade apparently refers to the California killer who carried out a "day of retribution" in 2014, CNN law enforcement analyst Josh Campbell said.

Facebook has since taken the post down. The full post also says "the incel rebellion has already begun."

"Incel" or "involuntarily celibate," is a term used by men who claim they have been denied their right to experience sex with women.

The misogynistic community describing themselves as "incels" was banned from Reddit in November for breaking rules that prohibit hate speech on the online platform, The New York Times reported.

Members of the group were accused of encouraging violence against women as well as justifying and encouraging rape, according to an online petition calling to ban the subreddit community.

Gibson said Tuesday that investigators are looking at all aspects for the investigation, including the content of Minassian's post.

When asked if the suspect was motivated by his frustrations with women, Gibson said it was part of the investigation.

Suspect faces 23 charges

Minassian has been charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder for each of the victims, in addition to 13 counts of attempted murder.

Another charge of attempted murder is being considered, officials said.

In a brief hearing at the Ontario Court of Justice, Minassian appeared attentive Tuesday as he stood in court wearing a white prison jumpsuit with his hands cuffed behind him.

A judge has ordered that he remains in custody until he returns to court for a bail hearing on May 10.

'She embodied the definition of altruism'

A loving grandmother, a Jordanian national visiting his children and an investment firm worker were among the 10 people killed Monday.

Dorothy Sewell was "the best grandmother anyone could have asked for," her grandson, Elwood Delaney, said.

She was an avid sports fan and loved to watch the Toronto's Blue Jays and Maple Leafs.

The sports community is also mourning the loss of Anne-Marie D'Amico, a long-time volunteer at the Rogers Cup, a professional tennis tournament.

Through the years, D'Amico went from ball girl to committee head of Stadium Control, according to Tennis Canada. The investment firm worker had also gone on volunteer trips to the Dominican Republic.

She "embodied the definition of altruism," her family said in a statement.

"It comforts us knowing that the world has a chance to know her and we hope that in this time, people fight with the same altruism rather than anger and hatred," they added.

Another victim is Munir Abdo Habib al-Najar, a Jordanian national who was visiting one of his children in Toronto, the Jordanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

Canadian authorities have not released the names of the victims and have said they are still working to identify them.

Hospital officials said 12 of the 14 injured remain hospitalized. Five are in critical condition, three are in serious condition and four are stable.

A dramatic arrest

Cellphone video obtained by CNN partner CTV appears to show a tense standoff with a suspect after the incident. Police have not said whether the person in the video was Minassian.

The footage appears to show a man standing in front of a white van with a damaged front bumper. The man is yelling and extending one arm, pointing an object at an officer standing behind a black car.

The officer has his weapon drawn and pointed at the man. The officer slowly steps toward him and yells "Get down, get down!"

Later in the video, the man is seen on the ground and the officer is cuffing his hands behind him; the object can be seen lying on the ground off to the side.

Terre Haute
Clear
84° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 85°
Robinson
Scattered Clouds
81° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 83°
Indianapolis
Scattered Clouds
84° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 84°
Rockville
Clear
80° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 81°
Casey
Clear
84° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 84°
Brazil
Clear
84° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 85°
Marshall
Clear
84° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 85°
Sunny and warm!
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Confirmed Cases: 155931

Reported Deaths: 7394
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Cook958844729
Lake10422428
DuPage9794487
Kane8137281
Will7340326
Winnebago3191106
St. Clair2347144
McHenry2285102
Kankakee143966
Madison125870
Rock Island121730
Unassigned1184201
Kendall107123
Champaign104117
Peoria68730
DeKalb65020
Boone63921
Sangamon54733
Jackson35719
McLean32615
Randolph3197
Ogle3164
Stephenson2866
LaSalle27017
Macon25322
Clinton24616
Whiteside21815
Union21219
Coles19917
Grundy1965
Adams1891
Tazewell1788
Iroquois1765
Knox1710
Monroe16513
Williamson1624
Warren1500
Cass1409
Morgan1344
Henry1201
Jefferson11517
Lee1072
McDonough10715
Vermilion892
Pulaski850
Montgomery802
Marion790
Macoupin703
Douglas610
Perry611
Jo Daviess561
Livingston552
Woodford542
Christian534
Jasper477
Franklin460
Jersey441
Ford421
Clark400
Bureau382
Menard330
Effingham321
Cumberland300
Mercer290
Johnson280
Alexander250
Fayette253
Mason250
Washington250
Moultrie240
Wabash230
Bond222
Carroll212
Hancock211
Piatt210
Shelby211
Crawford200
Edgar200
Logan200
Wayne191
De Witt180
Saline170
Fulton160
Massac160
Schuyler130
Lawrence120
Marshall120
Greene110
Brown100
White100
Richland90
Clay80
Henderson80
Pike80
Gallatin70
Hamilton70
Stark60
Edwards50
Out of IL30
Calhoun20
Hardin10
Pope10
Putnam10
Scott10

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Confirmed Cases: 52037

Reported Deaths: 2762
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion12111693
Lake5677249
Elkhart366260
Allen2971134
St. Joseph221169
Hamilton1735101
Cass16489
Hendricks1470100
Johnson1351118
Porter84938
Vanderburgh8016
Tippecanoe7859
Clark71944
Madison68164
LaPorte62928
Howard61058
Bartholomew60545
Kosciusko5844
Marshall57011
Noble52428
Boone49244
LaGrange48710
Delaware48152
Jackson4793
Hancock47436
Shelby46025
Floyd41844
Monroe36128
Morgan34431
Grant32226
Dubois3196
Henry30318
Montgomery29720
Clinton2903
White27810
Dearborn27123
Warrick26829
Vigo2618
Decatur25732
Lawrence25325
Harrison21822
Greene19932
Miami1942
Jennings17912
Putnam1748
DeKalb1694
Scott1659
Wayne1596
Daviess15117
Perry15110
Steuben1402
Orange13823
Jasper1362
Ripley1357
Franklin1288
Gibson1282
Wabash1193
Carroll1142
Starke1093
Fayette1087
Whitley1086
Newton10110
Huntington942
Jefferson872
Wells831
Randolph804
Fulton761
Jay720
Knox710
Washington681
Pulaski661
Clay645
Posey640
Rush623
Spencer591
Owen531
Benton510
Sullivan511
Adams491
Brown441
Blackford402
Fountain362
Crawford330
Tipton331
Switzerland320
Parke280
Martin260
Ohio230
Vermillion200
Warren151
Union140
Pike120
Unassigned0193