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Suspect arrested in string of hate-motivated assaults: police

Christopher Otoo, 27, of Toronto is facing a total of eight charges. Toronto police

Toronto police have made an arrest in a string of Scarborough-area assaults that investigators allege were hate-motivated.

The attacks began in June, with the latest incident reported on the afternoon of September 29 when a woman walking her baby in the Celeste Drive and Kingston Road area was approached by a man who yelled racial slurs at her. Police say the man threw a water bottle at the woman twice, hitting her in the shoulder and face and splashing water on her 3-month-old baby.

Police identified a suspect and on October 17, Christopher Otoo, 27, of Toronto was arrested and charged with two counts of assault with a weapon.

In a release, police said they believe the same suspect is responsible for several other incidents in June and July, resulting in an additional six counts of assault.

Several of the alleged incidents took place on TTC property.

On June 4, a woman was sitting on the subway at York Mills station when a man sat close to her, violating COVID-19 social-distancing protocols. When the woman objected, police say the man spat on her and punched her. When a bystander attempted to intervene, police say the suspect tried to attack the Good Samaritan.

On June 7, police say a man sitting on a bus in the Markham Road and Eglinton area was spit on and had his turban knocked off his head.

Two more random attacks were reported in July, one on the subway platform at Dufferin station, and the other on a bus near Kennedy station. In both instances, the suspect punched unsuspecting people, hurling racial slurs, and trying to remove a Patka from one of the victim’s heads.

Otoo is scheduled to appear in court on Thursday.