February 1, 2017 4:05 pm
Updated: February 1, 2017 9:31 pm

Alexandre Bissonnette allegedly visited Quebec City mosque days before shooting: source

WATCH BELOW: Sunday night, six people were fatally shot at a Quebec City mosque by alleged gunman Alexandre Bissonnette. Video shows a timeline as the events unfolded.

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Alexandre Bissonnette showed up to the Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec a few days before the shooting Sunday to ask for money, a senior member of the mosque in Quebec City told Global News.

READ MORE: Quebec City mosque left with blood stains, bullet holes after deadly shooting

The source, who asked not to be identified, told Global News that Bissonnette said he wanted to leave Quebec City for Montreal and he wanted money.

WATCH: Global’s Mike Le Couteur went inside with some of the men who were there that night. A warning, some may find the images disturbing. 


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The man said he refused, and claims Bissonnette then followed him to his car.

READ MORE: Alexandre Bissonnette charged with 6 counts of 1st degree murder

At the time, he said he didn’t think anything of the interaction, simply thinking Bissonnette was a drug addict asking for money.

Bissonnette was not previously known to police, but the 27-year-old university student did have a reputation for being a “troll” online.

READ MORE: Hate crimes spike in Montreal after Quebec City mosque shooting

“He was someone who made frequent, extreme comments in social media denigrating refugees and feminism,” François Deschamps, who runs a Facebook page aimed at supporting refugees in Quebec City, told The Globe and Mail.

“It wasn’t outright hate, rather part of this new nationalist conservative identity movement that is more intolerant than hateful.”

According to his social media accounts, Bissonnette often expressed support for far-right and nationalist ideologies.

READ MORE: Canadian CEO offers to cover funeral costs for Quebec City mosque shooting victims

On Facebook, he “liked” a number of pages, including the official page for Marine Le Pen, Islam critic Richard Dawkins and Donald Trump.

Nevertheless, classmates didn’t see him as violent, rather Bissonnette had a reputation as being a “nerdy outcast” who knew a lot about history, current events and politics.

WATCH BELOW: The days after the Quebec City mosque shooting

The 27-year-old is accused of killing six people and wounding 19 others at the mosque in Quebec City Sunday.

He faces six charges of first-degree murder and five counts of attempted murder with a restricted firearm.

READ MORE: ‘Islamophobia exists,’ Montreal Muslim community in shock following Quebec City mosque attack

Until his arrest, Bissonnette had been working in the call centre for Hema-Quebec, which manages the blood supply in the province.

The victims were identified as Mamadou Tanou Barry, Abdelkrim Hassane, Khaled Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti, Azzeddine Soufiane and Ibrahima Barry.

rachel.lau@globalnews.ca

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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