QUEBEC CITY, QUE. (NEWS 1130) – Three funerals will be held tomorrow for the victims of Sunday’s mass shooting at a mosque in Quebec City. This morning the Quebec Islamic Cultural Centre re-opened its doors despite bullet holes in the walls and blood-stained carpets.
As the victims’ families cope with this week’s events, new details are emerging about the shooter. There are reports the suspect, 27-year-old Alexandre Bissonette was armed with two guns. And that he left the mosque at one point and returned with a hand gun after some issue with a rifle he had in his possession.
Meantime, the CEO of Paramount Fine Foods, an Ontario restaurant chain, is offering to cover all the funeral costs for the six men killed. Mohammad Fakih has also volunteered to pay for any necessary repairs to the mosque.
Meanwhile, a GoFundMe page set up yesterday, has now raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for the victims’ families. The community also held a full Catholic Mass in the St. Foy neighbourhood last night.
CityNews Toronto reporter Avery Haines is still in the province’s capital where hundreds of people have shown their support to the Muslim community and she adds they are resilient. “The people of Quebec City are incredibly strong and the show of solidarity from all faiths gathering to say this is not something that happens in this country and it shouldn’t happen in this country.”
In all, six of the 25 people shot were killed, while two remain in critical condition in the hospital.
Prayer vigil being held at the Fiji Islamic Centre tonight in #SurreyBC to honour the Que. shooting victims. Starts at 7p at 12988 84th Ave.
— Sonia Aslam (@SoniaSAslam) February 1, 2017
Next steps in the investigation
With the tragedy still at the front of so many of our minds, the investigation into the shooting now shifts to why it happened in the first place. One security expert is now weighing in to explain where the investigation goes from here.
David Hyde is an independent security consultant and he says one of the first areas investigators examine in situations like this is social media which can usually give insight as to where a suspect’s headspace was at. “Combing through the different forums [the shooter] has been speaking on or was involved in. It’s very often the case there is information in there that reflects the state of mind of the individual over time.”
Hyde adds with the suspected shooter having attended university, there could be a fair amount of information from the school as well. “There will be quite a lot of data on the individual there that will be in the university’s system, probably a university email account, so they’re going to want to put that full picture together.”
Hyde points out while you can’t protect everything, recognizing that this can happen anywhere is a big step going forward.
Bissonnette remains in custody and he has been charged with six counts of first-degree murder and five for attempted murder.
PMO goes after Fox News
Fox News has deleted a tweet identifying the suspect in the Quebec City mosque shooting as “Moroccan.” But only after a senior official with the Prime Minister’s Office accused the media organization of spreading misinformation.
In an open letter to Fox News Channel co-president Bill Shine, PMO Communications Director Kate Purchase writes that Canada is “an open, welcoming country that stands by its citizens.”
She accuses the tweet of “perpetuating fear and division,” and dishonouring the memory of the victims of Sunday’s mass shooting. Fox News has since apologized and has taken down the tweet.