The Special Investigations Unit (SIU), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in Ontario, is looking into the death of a 29-year-old man at the Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre (EMDC) on December 27, 2018. The SIU reports that the victim was arrested by London police on December 26 at 3 PM. They claim that the as-of-yet unnamed man was transported to the police station and placed in a cell to await a bail hearing.
According to the SIU, the following morning he was transported to court for his hearing and then transferred to the Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre. They report that shortly after his arrival at the EMDC, he collapsed. He was taken to the London Health Science Centre and pronounced dead at 8:59 PM.
The SIU has assigned two investigators to examine the circumstances surrounding this death.
Edmonton police shot and killed a 34-year-old man who has been identified by family as Buck Evans on Boxing Day in southeast Edmonton. The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in the province, has said that the fatal interaction began with a police traffic stop. It ended with police firing several rounds, striking and killing the victim who was pronounced dead shortly after 2:45 PM.
A witness, Dustin Waterson used his phone to record part of the interaction. That video records more than 30 gunshots. Waterson expressed shock at the number of shots fired by police and the fact that officers fired directly toward an apartment complex putting residents at great risk.
In an interview with the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) Waterson said: “Far too many as far as I’m concerned. It’s one thing for cops to get the bad guys, or whatever you want to call them, but it’s the fact that they were shooting towards the apartment building” (quoted in Cummings 2018).
Buck Evans was father to a young son.
Cummings, Madeleine. 2018. “Man Killed by Police on Boxing Day Fired Gun, ASIRT Says.” CBC News December 28. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/man-killed-boxing-day-fired-gun-asirt-investigation-condo-1.4961031
Calgary Police Service officers shot and killed a woman, said to be in her thirties, in the early morning hours of Christmas 2018. The woman was shot by an officer with around 10 years on the force some time after 2:30 AM on McKnight Boulevard near 68th Street NE. Police report that they had undertaken an hours long vehicle chase of the woman before stopping her vehicle and killing her near the northeast community of Falconridge. Details of the lethal interaction have not been disclosed publicly. The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT), the unit that examines cases of police harm to civilians in Alberta, is investigating the killing. An autopsy has been scheduled for December 26.
Saskatoon Police Service officers have shot and killed a 27-year-old man on the evening of December 22, 2018. Few details have been released publicly but it has been reported that police responded to reports of a man in crisis in a motor vehicle. RCMP officers were reportedly the first to encounter the man, partially disabling his vehicle with a tire-deflation device. Saskatoon Police Service officers then encountered the man, shooting him. The victim died in hospital.
It has been reported that the man was in contact by phone with several people, including Saskatoon police crisis negotiators, throughout the evening, including during the killing.
Killer cop Patrick Ouellet of the Sûreté du Québec (SQ), the provincial police force, has been sentenced to eight months in jail for killing five-year-old Nicholas Thorne-Belance in February 2014. Ouellet had been found guilty of dangerous driving causing death in July 2018 for crashing his police vehicle into the car in which Thorne-Belance was riding, killing the child.
Ouellet was driving an unmarked police cruiser at more than 100 km/h in a 50 km/h zone in Saint-Hubert, when he smashed into the side of the car carrying Nicholas, his sister and his father.
Quebec court Judge Éric Simard handed down the sentence on November 18 at the Longueuil courthouse. In addition to the eight-month sentence, Ouellet will also be banned from driving for 20 months.
Crown lawyer Geneviève Langlois said the sentence was intended to make a statement: “The incarceration sends a clear message to the police community regarding the criminal behavior adopted by police officers in the course of their duties.”
This is a curious statement given the shortness of the sentence and the fact that initially the Crown did not even press charges against Ouellet. At the time they said that speeding was not a sufficient reason to lay charges.
It was only after immense public outcry that the case was examined closely, and charges brought forward. Then-justice minister Stephanie Vallée appointed a panel of independent prosecutors, including a retired judge, to look at the case. Ouellet was only charged in May 2015, more than a year after the crash.
Killer cop Ouellet is currently appealing the verdict.
A 23-year-old man was found unresponsive in an Edmonton police holding cell around 7:40 AM and was pronounced dead in hospital at about 2 PM on Friday, November 30, 2018. The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team, the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in the province, is investigating.
The man had been arrested for allegedly uttering threats and being unlawfully in a house. Police have not said if charges were laid or pending.
Few other details have been released publicly, including the name of the victim or the officers involved.