Victims in Canada crossbow attack were mother, brothers of accused

Tue Aug 30, 2016 4:11pm EDT
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TORONTO (Reuters) - The three people killed in a crossbow attack last week in Toronto were the mother and two brothers of the man accused of the crime, police in Canada's largest city said on Tuesday after a local court lifted a publication ban on their names.

Court files showed the people killed last Thursday in Toronto's east end were Susan, Christopher and Alexander Ryan.

Brett Ryan, 35, a convicted bank robber known as the "fake beard bandit" for committing the robberies in disguise, faces three counts of first-degree murder.

Toronto police spokesman Mark Pugash confirmed the family ties between the victims and the suspect but declined to provide more details.

Police said Susan Ryan was strangled, while Christopher and Alexander Ryan were killed by crossbow bolts.

The mother owned the property where the killings occurred. Brett Ryan had lived there before, public records showed.

Ryan appeared in court on Tuesday when local media challenged the publication ban. He wore a white T-shirt and appeared calmer than during his previous appearance.

Ryan next appears in court on Friday. His lawyer, G.J. Partington, declined to comment.

Police have not given a motive for the crime.   Continued...

A boy stands near a crime scene in front of a house where three people have died in an incident involving a crossbow in the Scarborough suburb of Toronto, August 25, 2016.     REUTERS/Mark Blinch