The man accused of dumping buckets of “liquefied fecal matter” on several people in a series of bizarre attacks in or near two Toronto universities is set to appear in a downtown court Wednesday morning.
Police arrested Samuel Opoku, 23, Tuesday evening following three separate incidents over four days in which police say a man attacked a total of five people with buckets containing feces.
He is charged with five counts of assault with a weapon and five counts of mischief interfering with property.
The serial feces attacks have provoked disgust and fear on the city’s university campuses.
A courtroom at Old City Hall was fully packed ahead of Opoku’s appearance Wednesday morning.
The most recent incident happened shortly before midnight Monday near the University of Toronto’s downtown campus as a man approached a woman and threw the contents of a bucket on her.
“A young girl had a bucket of waste, feces, dumped on her,” said Toronto police Const. David Hopkinson. “I don’t know what to say, I’m at a loss, this is absolutely disgusting.”
The two similar assaults occurred in libraries at York University’s Keele Street campus on Sunday and at U of T’s downtown campus on Friday.
On Friday evening, police say a man entered U of T’s John P. Robarts Library and allegedly poured a bucket of fecal matter onto a woman and a young person seated at a table before fleeing.
On Sunday, police say a man attacked two more people in the same fashion at York’s Scott Library.
Emily Leonard, a PhD student in the Ancient Greek program and a frequent user of the Robarts Library on Tuesday said she found the serial nature of the attacks especially concerning.
“Unbelievable that a person would be going around doing this.”
Victor Kwong, a spokesperson for the Toronto police, said although the victims of each attack are all Asian, police do not believe the attacks were racially motivated.
“We don’t know if that’s the connection, because we have different parts of Asia in there. Some (of the victims) were from the west side, some from the east side — so it’s not like they were all Chinese, per se.”
Kwong said the police are forensically inspecting an orange bucket they found following Monday’s attack to see if the feces are, in fact, human.
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On Tuesday, Mayor John Tory expressed what was on the minds of many.
“It’s completely inexplicable, I don’t know why someone would do such a thing,” Tory said. “This is a person, to me, who has some very serious issues, it would seem. The most important part is that they’re tracked down.”