Defence to call new witness in Toronto van attack trial

The defence of the man who killed 10 people in Toronto’s van attack continues Wednesday.


Warning: Details of the trial are graphic in nature, discretion is advised

The defence of the man who killed 10 people in Toronto’s van attack continues Wednesday.

Alek Minassian has pleaded not criminally responsible to 10 counts of first-degree murder and 16 counts of attempted murder, with his defence team arguing that he lacked the capacity to rationally decide whether the act was right or wrong.

The defence said he should be found not criminally responsible for his actions that day due to autism.

He has admitted in court to planning and carrying out the attack.

On Tuesday, the cross-examination of Alek Minassian’s father, Vahe or “Vic” as he’s known, centered around whether or not he actually witnessed his son display that emotion following the attack.

The defense’s ‘not criminally responsible’ case rests on its claim that the accused lacks the ability to empathize and to understand the impact his actions have on the world.

The Crown pressed Vahe on Tuesday, alleging that he changed his opinion on whether Alek cried to help his son evade responsibility for his actions.

Vahe earlier admitted that at his initial meeting with forensic psychiatrist, Dr. John Bradford, he told the doctor it looked like Alek was crying in the interrogation video.

During Monday’s testimony, however, Vahe told the court after watching the video again, he realized his son wasn’t actually crying, but was merely talking to himself.

Vahe also testified earlier that his son claimed he didn’t do anything wrong, showed no remorse and offered no apology for the attack.

Alek’s state of mind at the time of the attack is the only issue at play in trial.

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