September 19, 2021

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Charge upgraded against accused man held in fatal law firm stabbing

Osman Osman, 33, faces second degree murder; seeing psychiatrist in jail

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The suspect accused in the stabbing death of Julia Ferguson, 29, is now facing an upgraded charge of second-degree murder.

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Osman Osman, 33, made a brief court appearance by video from the Toronto South Detention Centre.

The crown requested “non-communication orders” forcing Osman not to have contact with a list of 19 people.

Three of those people are Ferguson’s relatives; her brother and boyfriend are among them.

Osman is accused in connection with the death of Ferguson, who was stabbed at about 2 p.m. on Sept. 2 as she worked as a receptionist at a law firm in the area close to Sherbourne St. and King St. E.

Ferguson died in hospital on Sept. 5 with family by her side.

At Wednesday’s hearing, the crown requested Osman remain detained.

We apologize, but this video has failed to load.

The Justice of the Peace said “due to the nature of the charge Mr. Osman is going to continue in detention.”

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“Mr. Osman, have you understood sir, that the case is going to go over until September the 22nd?”

“Yes,” Osman said.

Julia Ferguson with her brother Chris Ferguson. FAMILY HANDOUT
Julia Ferguson with her brother Chris Ferguson. FAMILY HANDOUT

It was the only word he uttered during his seven-minute appearance in which he wore an orange jumpsuit and a blue medical mask.

Osman’s lawyer Alan Sobcuff told the court “he does have mental health issues. I understand that he has already been seen by, I believe, somebody in the jail. A psychiatrist perhaps.”

Christopher Hicks, founding partner of Hicks Adams LLP where the incident happened, told the Sun on Tuesday that he is legally not allowed to discuss any link between Osman and the firm.

“I’m not supposed to talk about that,” Hicks said. “Homicide doesn’t want me talking about the investigation or who was involved.”

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On Monday, Det.-Sgt. Tiffany Castell said Osman had a connection to the firm, but she wouldn’t elaborate.

“I can’t get into too many more details, but there is an association there,” she said, adding investigators allege the attack wasn’t random.

Julia Ferguson with her mother Lynn. FAMILY HANDOUT
Julia Ferguson with her mother Lynn. FAMILY HANDOUT

A GoFundMe page set up by Ferguson’s friends as a gesture of support for her family has raised more than $72,000 as of Wednesday afternoon.

“Even in her passing Julia will be helping others seeing that she decided to be an organ donor. She felt it was important to give anything she could to those in need. She will live on in our memories and through those she has and will help,” wrote the organizer Lisa S.

Julia Ferguson with her boyfriend Jesse. FAMILY/HANDOUT
Julia Ferguson with her boyfriend Jesse. FAMILY/HANDOUT

Osman is scheduled back in court on Sept. 22 at 9 a.m.

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