Canadians across the country are desperate for answers after a deadly attack in Toronto left ten dead and fourteen others injured on April 23.
Alek Minassian, 25, was arrested after taking a white van and driving it into pedestrians on a busy sidewalk in the Yonge and Finch area, just 15 kilometres north of Toronto. Minassian appeared in court the next day and was charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder as well as 14 counts of attempted murder, however no clear motive has been identified.
Driver of Ryder rental van arrested after plowing down people on a busy Toronto sidewalk #Toronto— DeDeKim (@ZDeDeKim)
That being said, multiple reports link the attack to a movement called the "Incel Rebellion" after discovery of a Facebook post in which Minassian made reference to it.
"As has been reported in the media, the accused is alleged to have posted a cryptic message on Facebook, minutes before he began driving the rental van," said Sgt. Graham Gibson of the Toronto Police.
"Incel" is short for "involuntary celibate," which refers to groups of men who are unable to enter into sexual relationships. Several incel forums exist online and serve as spaces where members can vent their anger towards sexually successful men ("Chads") and women ("Stacys"). Most of the time, the rants involve harsh criticisms of feminism and women in general.
Incels also often give praise to Elliot Rodger, a murderer who killed six people in a rampage through Isla Vista, California in 2014. Investigators discovered that Rodger himself was an incel after finding a written manifesto detailing his deep sexual frustrations and hatred for women.
DEVELOPING: Van Plows Into Crowd of Pedestrians In Toronto, Police Say - https://breaking911.com/developing-van-plows-into-crowd-of-pedestrians-in-toronto-police-say/ …— Breaking911 (@Breaking911)
Though Minassian's motive is still under speculation, his involvement with the "Incel Rebellion" could indicate that the attack was highly motivated by incel ideals.
"There's no [incel] group that we're speaking to; what were doing is collecting as much information as we can find," added Gibson.
At least nine people were killed and 16 injured in Toronto when a van drove into pedestrians on a busy street, a police official says https://cnn.it/2HVOWQf— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk)
Toronto Police held a press conference where it was confirmed that the investigation is still ongoing, and no evidence pertaining to the incident are to be revealed as of yet. Identification of the victims is also still underway, and no names are being released at this time.
"When we have tragedies of such multiple numbers and complexity, it's very challenging," said Dr. Dirk Huyer, Ontario's Chief Coroner. "Over the next number of days we will be doing that work. We'll also be doing full examinations to fully understand the injuries that have occurred."