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Teen in TTC spat with Muslims tells his side A TTC ride home nearly two weeks ago left Brandon Van Dinther painted as the poster child for Islamophobia in Toronto, his very life threatened. Van Dinther and two friends reportedly lashed out at two Muslim women on a Bloor subway car, a brief but ugly encounter that would be broadly characterized in the wake of the Paris terror attacks that saw 130 killed by Muslim extremists as a shameful example of Canadian Islamophobia. The teen met with and apologized to both women last week for his role in the exchange, but insisted in an interview with the Toronto Sun that misunderstanding and anger, not racism, fuelled the encounter. Things escalated when Van Dinther, who is mixed race with a black mom and a white father, and his friend, who is black, heard the Muslim women accuse them of like monkeys and believed the women were making a racial slur nike j fox against them. The 16 year old, through nike kobe the intervention of Toronto Police, met with both Muslim women and apologized for his role in the altercation. people can take it the way they want, but at the end of the nike nfl day, I know I apologizing straight out of my heart to these two women, Van Dinther said. 18 Van Dinther other friends and the Muslim women wouldn speak to media, nor would police elaborate beyond saying no charges would be laid and the TTC has no audio recording of any part of the encounter. But shortly after the incident occurred, TTC spokesman Brad Ross said two women wearing hijabs on the eastbound train, between Yonge and Sherbourne stations, were nothing but minding their own business when two men and a woman began taunting them. Witnesses on the train reported that one of the three kids referred to the Muslim women as terrorists and suggested they were going to blow up the train. were making racist comments towards these women, suggesting they must be terrorists and were going to blow up the train, Ross said. three cowards fled the station, he added. The story went viral as another example of Muslim backlash, likened to the fire set deliberately at a mosque in Peterborough and now being investigated as a hate crime. This story was also widely picked up by social media, politicians including Toronto Mayor John Tory, and foreign press. The only problem, according to Van Dinther, is what actually happened didn get reported. Nov. 18 at the Yonge subway station. As he entered the car, he felt the sharp pain of someone behind him stepping on the heel of his new white Nike Air Force 1 sneakers. Annoyed, he spun around and glared at the offender a woman in her 20s wearing a hijab. He expected an apology, but instead said she responded with what he took as a rude remark. she said. His immediate reaction was to respond in kind breath stinks, he said. were saying we were behaving like monkeys and my friend took offence to that because he black, too, Van Dinther said. friend said, me? I have a Canadian citizenship. Don call me a monkey, I can play music wherever I want They were racist before we started arguing. the train continued to the next stop, people were shoulder to shoulder and tempers flared. Van Dinther, who wore a gold grill on his teeth, a Michael Kors watch, jeans and a black parka that day, said one of the Muslim women began pointing her finger in his girlfriend face. His girlfriend swatted the finger away and warned: you guys aren going to be quiet, they not going to be quiet. So why don you guys just shut up. voices rose to shouts and with all eyes on the packed train on the confrontation, Van Dinther noticed in the window reflection a passenger hit the yellow emergency strip. He said he turned to his girlfriend, who was in the middle of the heated fight with the two Muslim women, and said aloud, you press the emergency button, they going to think it a bomb. the train halted at Sherbourne station and, according to Van Dinther, he and his friends were questioned by two TTC operators and then told them to leave the station after the Muslim women declined to call police. They were told they wouldn be allowed back on that train.