Who is Febrio Dezoysa Ottawa? Sri Lankan Int’l Student Murders Host Family of 5

Febrio Dezoysa, a 19-year-old Ottawa student from Sri Lanka, has been arrested after murdering five members of a family and one other person.

Febrio Dezoysa has been charged with six counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted murder.

He is believed to be in Canada as an international student, being hosted by the family he murdered.

The tragic incident involved the use of an “edged weapon” or “knife-like object” and has been tagged a ‘mass stabbing’ by the media.

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The victims include four children and two adults – a mother, her four children and one other person – and occurred inside a townhouse in the Ottawa suburb of Barrhaven late Wednesday night.

The father of the family, Dhanushka Wickramasinghe, was also attacked but survived and called the authorities.

Emergency responders found six people dead and one person injured at the scene.

In this article, we break down all that happened.

Who is Febrio Dezoysa Ottawa?

febrio dezoysa ottawa

Febrio Dezoysa is a 19-year-old Sri Lankan student in Ottawa, Canada who murdered five members of his host family.

Febrio DeZoysa was a student at Algonquin College and was staying with a Sri Lankan family he was acquainted with.

The Ottawa Police Service (OPS) responded to a home in the 300 block of Berrigan Drive at 10:52 p.m. Wednesday, March 6 after receiving a number of 911 calls.

Investigators say a man was found outside the house – identified as Dhanushka Wickramasinghe – yelling for help, and was taken to hospital where he is now in serious, but stable condition.

Police say the bodies of his wife, four children, and an acquaintance were then found inside the home.

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The victims have been identified as:

Darshani Banbaranayake Hama Walwwe Darshani Dilanthika Ekanyake, 35
Inuka Wickramasinghe, 7
Ashwini Wickramasinghe, 4
Rinyana Wickramasinghe, 2
Kelly Wickramasinghe, 2 months old
Amarakoonmubiayansela Ge Gamini Amarakoon, 40

A candlelight vigil was held the night of Saturday, March 9th for the six victims of the ‘mass stabbing’ attack.

Hundreds of friends and residents in Barrhaven attended the vigil which started at 11 a.m. in Palmadeo Park in Barrhaven, near the home where they were killed.

The suspect, Febrio Dezoysa, knew the family and had been living in the house.

Indeed, the family reportedly threw a birthday party for him just a few days ago to celebrate his 19th birthday, according to the Canadian Press.

The family

He has been charged with six counts of first degree murder and one count of attempted murder.

Officials said an edged weapon was used in the mass killing.

“This was a senseless act of violence, perpetrated on purely innocent people,” Chief Eric Stubbs said in a news conference.

On Thursday evening, Algonquin College president Claude Brulé released a statement confirming De-Zoysa was a student at the college and that “it appears his last semester of attendance was Winter 2023.”

He made his first court appearance late Thursday afternoon. De-Zoysa spoke little, stating his name and birthdate before sitting down.

He was ordered not to contact five people, one of whom is Dhanushka Wickramasinghe.

De-Zoysa’s next court appearance is scheduled for March 14.

Ottawa Mayor Mark Sutcliffe called the news “devastating”.

“While it will be difficult for many of us to go about our usual routines in the face of such tragedy, again there is no risk to the public.

“We are fortunate to live in a safe city where these events are extremely rare, but everyone understandably will react to this news today, and feel less safe and secure.”

Suicidal Thoughts

Febrio DeZoysa had been having suicidal thoughts prior to the mass stabbing, the resident monk at Hilda Jayewardenaramaya Buddhist Monastery, which the family attended, Bhante Suneetha told the media after speaking with Wickramasinghe.

De-Zoysa had recently moved into their basement as he pursued his studies in Ottawa however, he was reportedly having problems at school and had become suicidal, Suneetha learned from the father.

Instead of killing himself, he “killed someone else,” Suneetha said.

The resident monk said the father told him he was coming home from a cleaning job late Wednesday night when De-Zoysa suddenly attacked him.

“When he opened the door, that murderer hit him and stabbed him,” said Suneetha.

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The father resisted De-Zoysa and asked whether he had hurt his family.

“The murderer said ‘No, I didn’t do anything (to) them’. And he released him and went to the kids, and they’re gone.”

Suneetha said the father had part of two fingers cut off, and one has been repaired.

He also suffered a slash across his face between his nose and his eye and stab wounds to the chest and back.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau commented on the tragedy during a news conference Thursday.

“Obviously our first reactions are all ones of shock and horror at this terrible violence.

“We are expecting that the community reaches out to support family and friends as Canadians always do, and we expect the police of jurisdiction to be doing the work and keeping us all informed of this terrible tragedy.”

The Ottawa Catholic School Board confirmed the two eldest children were students in Grade 2 and junior kindergarten at Monsignor Paul Baxter School and added a message of condolence.

“We want to express our deep sorrow for the tragic events that occurred in the Barrhaven community. Our thoughts and prayers are with all affected. 🙏💔🕯️” the statement read.

“As a Board, we will provide our students and staff with any assistance or support needed during this difficult time,”

A fundraiser was set up to raise money to support the victims families.

The GoFundMe fundraiser had a goal of CAD 200,000 and had raised CAD 130,179 at the last updated time of this report.

“Our wish is to raise $200K. The financial support for the victims’ families will be coordinated through the local Buddhist Temple (Buddhist Congress of Canada, 1481, Heron Road, Ottawa. Ontario. K1V 6A6). Your generosity will be greatly appreciated,” the fundraiser, set up by Hilda Jayewardenaramaya read.

Anyone with information on the tragedy is asked to contact the Ottawa Police Service Homicide Unit at 613-236-1222 ext. 5493.

Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling Crime Stoppers toll-free at 1-800-222-8477 or crimestoppers.ca.

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Similar devastating tragedy to Febrio Desoyza murders

febrio de-zoysa ottawa

On the early morning of January 6, 2024, a tragic car accident claimed the lives of Jen Dormitorio Ambrosio and her husband, Ryan Ambrosio of Farmington Hills, Michigan.

The couple was involved in a collision on the Lodge Freeway near Civic Drive.

They were returning home from a night out when their vehicle was struck head-on by a wrong-way driver who was fleeing state troopers in a stolen vehicle.

The impact tragically led to their immediate passing.

Jen and Ryan are survived by their six children, ages 2 to 9 years old, none of whom were with them at the time of the crash.

Jen Ambrosio attended Plymouth-Canton High School before earning her Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Michigan.

She met the love of her life, Ryan Ambrosio, through mutual friends while volunteering as beer pourers at a charity event.

Ryan proposed to Jen on September 8, 2012, and they were married on June 8, 2013.

Their shared dream was to have a large family, and they were blessed with six children: Amelia, Maria Grace, Faustina, Benedict, Raphael, and Julian.

Much like the driver who totaled the Ambrosio’s car and destroyed their lives, Febrio Dezoysa devastated an entire community with his actions and must now face dire consequences.


Ottawa is the capital city of Canada.

It is located in the southern portion of the province of Ontario, at the confluence of the Ottawa River and the Rideau River.

Ottawa borders Gatineau, Quebec, and forms the core of the Ottawa–Gatineau census metropolitan area (CMA) and the National Capital Region (NCR).

As of 2021, Ottawa had a city population of 1,017,449 and a metropolitan population of 1,488,307, making it the fourth-largest city and fourth-largest metropolitan area in Canada.

Ottawa is the political centre of Canada and the headquarters of the federal government.

The city houses numerous foreign embassies, key buildings, organizations, and institutions of Canada’s government; these include the Parliament of Canada, the Supreme Court, the residence of Canada’s viceroy, and Office of the Prime Minister.

Founded in 1826 as Bytown, and incorporated as Ottawa in 1855, its original boundaries were expanded through numerous annexations and were ultimately replaced by a new city incorporation and amalgamation in 2001.

The municipal government of Ottawa is established and governed by the City of Ottawa Act of the Government of Ontario. It has an elected city council across 24 wards and a mayor elected city-wide.

Ottawa has the highest proportion of university-educated residents among Canadian cities[18] and is home to several colleges and universities, research and cultural institutions.

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