The father of a Toronto man accused of first-degree murder says his son is "a good kid" and there's more to the story than the media knows.
Speaking outside of the courthouse on Finch Ave., Mohamed Adam Bharwani's father, who didn't want to give his name, said Monday that even he doesn't know why his son is charged with first-degree murder.
"I think you know more than I do. Obviously there are a lot of things we don't know and so we should let the process take through until we know what's going on, obviously there must be more than meets the eye," he said.
Toronto police were called to a home on Clancy Drive, near Van Horne Avenue and Don Mills Drive, at 2:18 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.
When officers arrived at the scene, they found a woman "suffering from apparent trauma to the body," according to a police news release issued Sunday. Paramedics transported the woman to hospital with life-threatening injuries. She was later pronounced dead.
On Monday, police said an autopsy had determined that the victim died of "manual strangulation."
Police have not released the victim's name, but it's believed she's a foreign student and they're attempting to contact family overseas.
Bharwani made a brief court appearance Monday morning wearing a blue sweater. He barely spoke during the short hearing and had a faraway look in his eyes.
Six members of his family attended court, most declining to speak to the media outside.
"I know my son, I've changed his diapers. I know he's a good kid. He's a gifted kid. I don't know what has happened, I don't know what he's said, and until I do [what you report] won't be factual," his father says.
On Monday, police tape still surrounded the home in the quiet North York neighbourhood where the victim was found on the weekend.
Neighbour Nelson Martin says a lot of the homes in the area have been converted to apartments for students attending nearby Seneca College.
"With Seneca up the street, a lot of people rent them out to students so there's a lot of turnover. Don't know much about that situation, I understand the house was under renovation."
He said the alleged homicide doesn't affect his view of living in the area.
"There's no alarm in the neighbourhood, it could have happened anywhere," Martin said.
But Jay Desai, another area resident, says what happened does concern him.
"Sort of fearful that people move in and out and we don't know who they are, where they come from or what they do," he said.
It's not clear if the victim was a student at the college or if there was any relationship between the victim and the accused.
Bharwani is due back in court on Feb. 21.