After emergency responders tried unsuccessfully to revive the man, his body remained in the bathroom late into the evening as investigators worked around it. Among the items found nearby, one source confirmed, was a gas can.
Police were quick to dispel initial rumours of terrorism and reports of a man with explosives strapped to his body.
"He's not a strap-on Al Qaeda bomber guy," said Toronto police Staff Sgt. Don Cole.
"It sounds to me like a guy who either wanted to do a torch job or commit suicide."
A Tim Hortons employee, who was mopping the kitchen floor inside the iconic Canadian coffee shop, described the sound of the erupting flames as a "large door being slammed."
Eyewitness Phillips described bangs like pops from a firecracker and, as she fled the washroom area, a scream "that will haunt me forever.
"I thought the roof was caving in," she said. "People were screaming."
So what we had, in the end, was not a suicide bomber but another character all too common in its natural Toronto habitat: the self-destructive mentally disturbed man, whose fellows line the streets of downtown in various stages of delusion, destitution and intoxication.
One who just happened to go out in a blaze of glory near two prime Canadian terrorist targets.
Source: Toronto Star