Canadian police say Muslim family targeted in deadly attack

Carrie Guzman
June 8, 2021

A fatal hate-based attack in London, Ontario, that led to the tragic death of four members of the same family is being called a terrorist attack on Canadian soil.

The other child has serious but not life-threatening injuries.

The incident occurred around 8:40 p.m.at the intersection of Hyde Park and South Carriage roads.

The attack was pre-planned and pre-meditated and the suspect was wearing a vest that appeared to be like body armour during the attack, police said. The two adults and one teenaged child succumbed to their injuries at hospital.

The National Council of Canadian Muslims says it is "beyond horrified" by the deadly vehicle attack that killed four members of a Muslim family in London, Ont., Sunday.

Police say the 20-year-old man facing four counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted murder did not know the victims.

London Mayor Ed Holder ordered flags outside the city hall to be lowered for three days of mourning.

The group that represents Muslims across Canada also expressed their grief and frustration.

"Let me be clear, this was an act of mass murder perpetrated against Muslims, against Londoners, rooted in unspeakable hatred", Holder told reporters. They have not been named, in accordance with the wishes of the family.

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The attack was the worst against Canadian Muslims since a man gunned down six members of a Quebec City mosque in 2017.

The deceased include a 74-year-old female, a 46-year-old male, a 44-year-old female, and a 15-year-old female.

"My heart is just so broken for them today".

Paige Martin said she was in her auto stopped at a red light around 8:30 p.m. on Sunday when a large, black truck came up behind her and flew past at high speed.

"These were innocent human beings who were killed simply because they were Muslim", said community spokesperson Nawaz Tahir.

"Hate can not win, and every person in Canada must feel safe in their identity", she said.

Eyewitness Paige Martin told reporters a black truck blasted past her and ran a red light as she was walking, and then she came upon the scene and saw "chaos": "It was just absolutely like something that you never want to see".

She went home and from her apartment, she could see the scene.

Blue evidence markers on the ground dotted the intersection and officers were performing line searches for several hundred metres in the field next to the sidewalk.

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