The man accused of murdering his mother and her developmentally disabled client pleaded not guilty to 11 charges unrelated to the murder, including assault with a weapon and mischief.

Emanuel Kahsai, 30, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of his mother, 54-year-old Selma Alem, and second-degree murder in the death of 25-year-old Julie Tran, whose bodies were discovered in Alem's Coventry Hills home in October.

Alem's friends and Tran's father and brother were at court today for the development. Alem worked as a caregiver for Tran and another person in the home, according to police.

Court documents show that Alem was scared of her son and had sought protection against him in the months leading up to her death.

Selma Alem & Julie Tran

Selma Alem and Julie Tran were found dead in Alem's home in October. Alem's son is accused of murder. (Calgary Herald/Family photo)

When she sought the emergency protection orders — which made it illegal for Kahsai to come within 500 metres of her — Alem told the judge that her son was "angry with the whole world."

Aside from murder, Kahsai also faces 11 other charges, including assault with a weapon and mischief.

"Mr. Kahsai is very anxious to have these matters proceed," said defence lawyer Adriano Iovinelli. "Defence is prepared to set trial dates and a preliminary inquiry."

Those hearings will be scheduled next Tuesday.


  • An earlier version of this story said that Emanuel Kahsai pleaded guilty to his murder charges when, in fact he has not yet entered a plea on those charges.
    Jun 20, 2016 12:49 PM MT