QUEBEC — In a dramatic turn of events, the man accused of killing six men as they attended prayer in a Quebec City mosque last year has pleaded guilty to six charges of first-degree murder and six of attempted murder.
Alexandre Bissonnette originally pleaded not guilty to the 12 charges Monday morning but that afternoon announced he was changing his mind and wanted to plead guilty.
Superior Court Justice Francois Huot refused to accept the pleas pending a psychiatric assessment of the accused to ensure he fully understood the consequences.
Huot placed a publication ban on Monday afternoon’s proceedings but agreed this morning to accept the 12 guilty pleas.
The charges against Bissonnette, 28, were related to a shooting attack at the Islamic Cultural Centre in January 2017 in which the six men aged between 39 and 60.were killed.
The counts of attempted murder involved five people who were struck by bullets and a sixth charge encompassed the other people present at the mosque.
Bissonnette told Huot on Monday he had been thinking for sometime of pleading guilty but that he was missing certain pieces of evidence, which he received Sunday.