Charges laid in knife attack against Surrey school boy
Omar Moustapha Hassan, 37, was on probation at the time of Thursday's incident
Six charges have been laid against the 37-year-old Surrey man who took a nine-year-old hostage at Ecole Gabrielle-Roy on Thursday afternoon.
Omar Moustapha Hassan is scheduled to appear in a Surrey courtroom on Friday afternoon and has been charged with hostage taking, unlawful confinement or imprisonment, uttering threats to cause death or bodily harm, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, kidnapping, and failure to comply with a probation order.
The noon-hour incident, which ended peacefully after a nine-minute standoff, sent shockwaves through the close-knit French school and surrounding community. It also raised questions about how a man wielding a knife was able to get close enough to the boy, playing in the schoolyard at recess, to potentially do him harm.
A day after the knife attack, the father of the boy said his son is feeling upbeat and is back at school.
He said it was important that he go back — to show his classmates and his teachers that he wasn’t bothered by what happened, that everything was done properly on the school’s front, and that police handled everything quickly. The father added that his son even went trick-or-treating last night with his hockey team.
The alleged attacker has a recent history of violent outbursts and mental illness.
In September, Hassan was arrested for uttering threats to a police officer. He entered a guilty plea and was released on Oct. 8, on the condition that he couldn't possess a knife other than for preparing or eating food.
He spent most of last month inside Surrey Memorial hospital's psychiatric ward before being released Wednesday, a day before the schoolyard attack.
With files from Richard Zussman