Brampton courthouse shooting suspect a 'gentle' man, ex-wife says
Mystery surrounds the motivation of alleged courthouse gunman Charnjit Singh Bassi
Five days after Peel Regional Police officer Mike Klarenbeek was wounded inside the Brampton, Ont., courthouse, mystery surrounds the motivation of alleged gunman Charnjit Singh Bassi.
Bassi, 45, was shot dead by police at the courthouse, where Klarenbeek was providing security. Investigators have interviewed Bassi's relatives, friends and ex-wife, Sonian Chowdhry.
Chowdhry, in a statement delivered by her lawyer on Wednesday, described Bassi as a gentle man — not prone to violence or fanaticism during their decade-long marriage.
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"At no time during their marriage did Mr. Bassi illustrate traits of mental health illness, suicidal ideation or religious fanaticism," said Rishi Singh Bhasin, reading from the statement.
Bassi was not abusive, did not drink or abuse drugs during their marriage, and maintained a good relationship with Chowdhry’s daughter after the couple divorced in 2012, the statement continued.
He was "a gentle and supportive father," it said.
Bhasin said Chowdhry has since become aware that Bassi had been involved in potentially illegal activity.
"Since the dissolution of the marriage and … recent circumstances, she’s been made aware of certain alleged illegal activities Mr. Bassi may have been involved in," he said.
According to court records, Bassi claimed to make about $150,000 a year in various businesses including a retail shop and selling used cars. Records show two properties he lived in were registered in a friend’s name.
Six months before the couple divorced, the properties were transferred to Chowdhry and her family. Until last week Bassi lived in one of the homes and Chowdhry in the other, on the same street.
From a report by the CBC's John Lancaster