April 23, 2018 12:55 pm
Updated: April 23, 2018 5:32 pm

Former teacher of Quebec mosque shooter describes how he was bullied

WATCH: Alexandre Bissonnette considered shooting up the largest shopping mall in Quebec City just two months before the deadly mosque attack. As Global's Raquel Fletcher reports, the defence began its sentencing arguments.

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The man who murdered six Muslim men in a Quebec City mosque in January 2017 was bullied and intimidated mercilessly in high school, one of his former teachers told a court Monday.

READ MORE: Alexandre Bissonnette ‘regrets’ not shooting more people in Quebec mosque attack

Students would laugh at Alexandre Bissonnette, hit him and throw him against the wall regularly, said Lucie Cote, the defence’s first witness at sentencing arguments.

The bullying, she said, “was daily.”

READ MORE: Gunman says he went to Quebec mosque in 2017 to protect people from terrorists

Cote, who was Bissonnette’s teacher in two different years at two different schools, said he developed reflexes of nervousness and fear and did not defend himself.

WATCH BELOW: Alexandre Bissonnette searched mass attacks ahead of Quebec City mosque shooting

She told Superior Court Justice Francois Huot she came to testify on her own accord and that her presence wasn’t requested by the killer’s defence team.

“After everything he endured, I couldn’t stay silent,” she said.

Bissonnette, 28, pleaded guilty in March to six charges of first-degree murder and six of attempted murder related to the deadly mosque shooting in Quebec City.

The Crown’s previous presentation included Bissonnette’s 911 call as well as police interviews and emotional victim impact statements from the widows and children of some of the deceased.

READ MORE: Crown shows photo evidence in Quebec City mosque shooting sentencing hearing

Many of the family members said they’re still suffering from fear and trauma as a result of the massacre.

WATCH BELOW: ‘I wanted to save people’: Quebec City mosque shooter says he wanted to protect family from terrorists


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Bissonnette’s lawyers began presenting their case Monday and are seeking the shortest sentence for their client.

READ MORE: ‘I’m going to shoot myself in the head,’ Quebec mosque shooter tells 911 dispatcher

They signaled they will table psychiatric reports on Bissonnette.

READ MORE:  Quebec City mosque shooting anniversary leads to discussion about reconciliation

His first-degree murder conviction carries an automatic life sentence with no chance of parole for 25 years.

But he can also receive consecutive sentences, which means he could spend up to 150 years in prison.

READ MORE: Quebec City court views video of mosque shooting

Bissonnette’s lawyers have claimed in court that giving their client a 150-year jail term would be equivalent to sentencing him to death by incarceration.

© 2018 The Canadian Press

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