3 attempted murder charges added in Toronto van attack case

3 attempted murder charges added in Toronto van attack case
FILE - In this April 23, 2018, file photo, police stand near a damaged van after a van mounted a sidewalk crashing into pedestrians in Toronto. Alek Minassian accused of driving a van into pedestrians faces 16 counts of attempted murder and 10 counts of murder. He made a brief video appearance Thursday, May 10, 2018, to be formally charged with the additional counts stemming from the April 23 incident. (Aaron Vincent Elkaim/The Canadian Press via AP, File)

TORONTO (AP) — Prosecutors filed three additional counts of attempted murder Thursday against a 25-year-old man accused of driving a van into pedestrians in Toronto.

Alek Minassian now faces 16 counts of attempted murder and 10 counts of murder. He said nothing as he made a brief video appearance before a judge to be formally charged with the additional counts stemming from the April 23 incident.

Authorities have not disclosed a motive. But they have said Minassian posted a message on social media referencing a misogynistic online community before he plowed a rental van into crowds of pedestrians in a busy north Toronto neighborhood. Eight of the 10 people killed were women.

Defense lawyer Boris Bytensky declined to discuss a possible motive except to say that the case should not be considered terrorism.

“This isn’t a time to discuss Mr. Minassian,” Bytensky said outside court. “This is still a grieving period for the city. We have many victims and families are grieving. Our thoughts and the thoughts of the Minassian family are with them.”

The next hearing in the case is scheduled for Sept. 14.