Detective Superintendent Paul Waite of London Police said: “There is evidence that this was a well-planned, premeditated act, motivated by hatred. It is believed that these victims were targeted because they were Muslims.” “There is no known prior relationship between the suspect and the victims.”
A 74-year-old woman was declared brought dead on the spot on Sunday night and four other family members – a 46-year-old man, a 44-year-old woman, a 15-year-old girl and a nine-year-old boy – were taken to hospital by paramedical services. Gone.
Police said two adults and a teenager died in hospital. The boy was still recovering in a critical but non-life-threatening condition, he said, adding that the victims’ family members have requested not to release the victims’ names at this time.
According to Waite, the family waited at the crossroads when a black pickup truck driven by 20-year-old Nathaniel Veltman overturned the curb and hit them.
According to the police, Veltman was later stopped in the parking lot of a mall, where the police arrested him.
Weltman has been charged with four counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted murder.
According to Waite, London Police is also working with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police on possible terrorism charges against Veltman. It is unclear whether Veltman has obtained an attorney.
“We understand that this incident can cause fear and anxiety in the community, and especially in the Muslim community, in any community targeted by hatred. I want to assure all Londoners that today we are all and many others in your life. Standing together and supporting you,” said London Police Chief Steve Williams. “There is no tolerance in this community for individuals who, motivated by hatred, target others with violence.”
London is a city in southwestern Ontario with a population of approximately 385,000.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a statement that he was appalled by the attack.
“To the loved ones of those who were terrorized by yesterday’s act of hate, we are here for you. We are also here for the baby in the hospital – our hearts go out to you, and you will be in our thoughts for you. Get well,” Trudeau said.
He said, “The Muslim community in London and Muslims across the country know that we stand with you. Islamophobia has no place in any of our communities. This hatred is insidious and abhorrent – and must stop.”