A 20-year-old accused of killing four members of a Muslim family with his pickup truck in London was produced in court on Thursday, adjourning the case till Monday.
Nathaniel Veltman is facing four counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted murder.
No additional charges were filed during Thursday’s brief court appearance, with Weltman virtually connected to the Elgin-Middlesex Detention Center and the next date set for Monday, June 14.
When the charges were first announced on Monday, police said four members of a family who were hit by a vehicle and killed on Sunday evening northwest of the city were targeted because of their belief.
In an interview with Granthshala News on Wednesday, Chief Steve Williams was reluctant to disclose the evidence gathered by police, but said it was quickly clear that the Veltmans targeted a Muslim family.
“Without going into the details of what evidence came from all this, we were quite comfortable at an early stage, attributed it to a hate crime, and, as I indicated, to this family for their Islamic faith. The reason was targeted.”
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Salman Afzal, 46, his 44-year-old wife Madiha Salman, their 15-year-old daughter Yumna Afzal and Afzal’s 74-year-old mother died after police said a pickup truck deliberately hit the pavement and hit the family.
Nine-year-old Faiz Afzal, the lone survivor, was seriously injured.
His neighbor and close family friend for 14 years, Saboor Khan, said on Wednesday that the family “only did good to the society, they only did good to others,” making their tragic loss all the more painful.
–With files from Granthshala News’ Stewart Bell, Jeff Semple, Andrew Russell and Andrew Graham.