Inquest Called Into Quebec Police Killing of 17-Year-Old Brandon Maurice

Brandon Maurice was shot and killed by a Sûreté du Québec officer on November 16, 2015 in Messine (near Maniwaki) following a vehicular pursuit. On May 19, 2017, the province’s chief coroner,  Catherine Rudel-Tessier, ordered an inquest into the teenager’s killing by police. The inquest will be overseen by deputy chief coroner Luc Malouin. It cannot assign blame but can only make recommendations to address future such incidents. These are typically ignored or not implemented by police agencies under review.

Montreal police investigated their provincial colleagues, completing their examination in June 2016. Quite predictably they found for their colleague and concluded that no charges would be brought against their fellow officer. Yet the officer had fired wildly in the general direction of the driver, said to have been Maurice, and only luckily avoided hitting a passenger in the vehicle.

Maurice’s family was not satisfied with that investigation and found it illegitimate for police to be investigating police. In the words of Brandon Maurice’s mother, Dominique Bernier in 2016: “Police officers protect each other.” Indeed they do. The family’s view, quite reasonable, is that  investigations cannot be impartial when police investigate their colleagues. The family believes the officer used force that was excessive for a stopped car starting to drive away from an officer.


One response to “Inquest Called Into Quebec Police Killing of 17-Year-Old Brandon Maurice

  • Annie

    Thank you for reporting on this and keeping alive the memory of Brandon Maurice and highlighting this family’s long struggle for justice. It is important to find collectives working to highlight the circumstances around incidents in the past, including this case from 2005, and critical that these cases not be allowed to disappear from view through state strategies of delay and erasure. It is striking how much time has passed in this family’s struggle for justice and answers. Here in the San Francisco Bay Area, a collective of us has remained committed to a people’s investigation into the San Francisco Police killing of Asa Sullivan in 2006 to insure that Asa’s story cannot be dominated by the state, and also so that as a community we can better understand the policing strategies that contributed to this and other violences, including as Maurice’s mother emphasizes above, the strategy of police investigating themselves. We stand with the family of Brandon Maurice, and we will continue to follow this case and offer support and solidarity. When we complete our people’s investigation, we would like to share it with your group, as a community response for engaging and imagining new forms of justice and safety. Below please also find a link to one tool from our grassroots investigations–community timelines that allow us to situate particular violences within a larger history of law enforcement killings, moments of militarization, and also our resistances. Maybe something similar could be developed in support of the struggle for justice for Maurice. Much respect to Maurice’s mother Dominique Bernier and to the family for their long struggle, much care and love in light of their loss, and respect and gratitude to this site for the detailed reporting.


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