Ontario Court Finds Man Guilty for 2018 Toronto Van Attack

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Ontario Court Finds Man Guilty for 2018 Toronto Van Attack

TORONTO—An Ontario Court Wednesday found the driver of a van in a 2018 attack, which killed 10 people and injured 16 others, guilty on all counts.

Justice Anne Molloy’s verdict found Alek Minassian guilty of 10 counts of first-degree murder and another 16 counts of attempted murder.

She noted that Mr. Minassian had planned the attack weeks in advance and showed no remorse for his actions.

“His attack on these 26 victims that day was an act of a reasoning mind, notwithstanding its horrific nature, and notwithstanding that he has no remorse for it and no empathy for his victims,” wrote Justice Molloy in a 68-page decision.

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The verdict comes almost three years after Mr. Minassian drove a van through people in a North Toronto neighborhood, specifically targeting women in an attack that he said was motivated because he had been rejected by women.

Mr. Minassian linked himself to the incel movement, a loose, fringe group of misogynistic men who denigrate women on online discussion forums.

Described as socially awkward by schoolmates, Mr. Minassian was diagnosed as being on the Autism spectrum. His defense lawyers cited the condition in their arguments, claiming he didn’t recognize that his actions were morally wrong.

The justice rejected the arguments, noting that the attack was premeditated and he recognized that he would be going to jail for life, a fate he tried to avoid by encouraging a police officer to shoot him on the day of the attack.

Justice Molloy also said Mr. Minassian said he was happy that his name would be associated with the attack on Google searches and so refused to use his name in her decision. She referred to him instead as John Doe in the decision because she wanted to deny him the notoriety he sought through the attack.

“It is my hope that his name would no longer be published by anyone else either,” she said.

Nick D’Amico, whose sister Anne Marie D’Amico was among those killed on that April afternoon, told reporters outside the courtroom the verdict offers a fresh start for his family.

“Hopefully we can get a good night’s sleep tonight. We can kind of move forward, without having the legalities of what happened hanging over our heads,” said Mr. D’Amico, in an interview with reporters outside the Toronto courthouse, which was broadcast on Canadian television.

Ten people were killed and many more injured after a van struck pedestrians on the sidewalk of one of Toronto’s busiest streets in April 2018). Eyewitnesses describe how the incident unfolded. Photo: Warren Toda/EPA-EFE (Originally published April 23, 2018)

Write to Vipal Monga at vipal.monga@wsj.com

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