Category Archives: Quebec

Man Pepper Sprayed, Dies During Arrest by Sherbrooke Police (July 25, 2020)

A 33-year-old man has died after being pepper sprayed and arrested by Sherbrooke police early in the morning of July 25, 2020.

Quebec’s police watchdog, the Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes (BEI), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in the province, is investigating the death. They report that police were responding to a call about an altercation in front of a business at around 10:15 AM.

The BEI claim that when police arrived one of the two men in the alleged altercation ran away. They report that an officer chased down that man and pepper-sprayed him. During arrest the man lost consciousness. He was taken to hospital and died there a few hours later.

The BEI has assigned eight investigators to the case. The BEI is not independent and relies on other police forces to carry out investigations, In this case, they are relying on the Quebec provincial police (SQ), to provide a forensics specialist.


Sûreté du Québec (SQ) Shoot and Kill 53-Year-Old Man in Lavaltrie (June 22, 2020)

Quebec’s provincial police force (Sûreté du Québec, SQ) shot and killed a 53-year-old man in Lavaltrie, Quebec (Lanaudière region), on June 22, 2020. The Bureau des enquetes independantes (Bureau of Independent Investigations, BEI), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in the province, is investigating the killing.

The BEI report that provincial police were called to a home in Lavaltrie around 8:20 PM in response to an alleged domestic dispute between a man and a woman. Police removed the man from the home but escorted him back inside to retrieve his wallet and some belongings. According to the BEI, police claim that once inside the man took a knife and injured himself. In response, as is far too typical, an SQ officer shot him and killed him.

Once again, when faced with someone apparently in distress and believed to pose a harm to themselves, police take action to do worse harm to the person. They act hastily to kill them.

In the last two weeks alone, the BEI has opened six investigations into police violence, including the RCMP killing of Rodney Levi, a Metepenagiag First Nation man, in New Brunswick.

The BEI is not an independent investigative agency. They rely on other police forces to do their investigations. The Montreal police service will be taking part in the investigation of this killing. The very force that killed a 51-year-old man two days before.


Man Dies After Being Pepper Sprayed and Subdued by Montreal Police (June 20, 2020)

A 51-year-old man died after being pepper sprayed and subdued by Montreal police late Saturday night. According to the Bureau des enquetes independantes (Bureau of Independent Investigations, BEI), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians, Montreal police responded at around 10:40 PM to calls about a domestic dispute at a hotel on Sherbrooke Street. According to the BEI, the man ran once police arrived and officers chased him for about 300 meters.

Police allegedly caught up to him near the corner of Ontario and Saint-Timothée streets, where they pepper sprayed, subdued, and handcuffed him. During the takedown and arrest, the man lost consciousness and did not have a pulse. He was taken to hospital and pronounced dead there.

The BEI has initially assigned six investigators to the killing. They are also using a forensic expert with the provincial police force (SQ) to assist with the investigation. It is thus not an independent investigation, and police are involved in investigating police.


Montreal Police Shoot and Kill 54-Year-Old Man (March 11-12, 2020)

A Montreal police officer shot and killed a 54-year-old man on the late night/early morning of March 11-12, 2020. The Bureau of Independent Investigations (BEI), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in Quebec, is investigating. According to the BEI, police were responding to a domestic dispute call in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve shortly before midnight. BEI report that an officer entered the apartment through the back door and opened fire on the man. The man was taken to hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The BEI is not actually an independent agency. They depend on police officers from other forces. Eight BEI investigators have been assigned to investigate this killing. They will be assisted by two Sûreté du Québec (SQ, provincial police force) forensic technicians. Police investigate police in Quebec.


Québec Provincial Police Shoot and Kill Brandon Christian (47) in St-Georges (Feb. 2, 2020)

Sûreté du Québec  (SQ), Québec’s provincial police force, shot and killed Brandon Christian (47), a former minor league hockey player, on the evening of February 2, 2020, in St-Georges, near Québec City. The Bureau des enquetes independantes (BEI), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in the province, is investigating.

According to the BEI, provincial police received a call at around 6:35 from a woman reporting that her ex-partner was in distress, wearing a mask, and holding a bat. The BEI reports that police found a man, who they claim seemed confused, on the streets on St-Georges. Police used pepper spray and a taser on the man before shooting and killing him. He was pronounced dead at hospital.

The BEI is not an independent investigation group as they rely on police forces for assistance in their investigations. Officers of the Québec City police force are assisting in the investigation into the killing of Brandon Christian by the SQ.


Man Dies After Being Held Overnight by Quebec Provincial Police (SQ) in Trois-Rivières (Jan. 21, 2020)

A 41-year-old man died at the courthouse in Trois-Rivières, Québec, on Tuesday, January 21, after having been arrested by Sûreté du Québec (SQ) officers the day before. The Bureau des enquetes independantes (BEI), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in the province, is investigating. They report that the man was arrested on January 20, in Bécancour by two officers of the Sûreté du Québec. According to the BEI, the man taken to the SQ station in Shawinigan where he was detained overnight.

The following day, the same SQ officers took the man to the Trois-Rivières courthouse and he was turned over to courthouse constables. Several hours later, the victim began to show signs of illness in the presence of courthouse constables and the judge who was to hear his case who ordered that the man be taken immediately to a hospital. He died before he could be taken from the courthouse.

The BEI has assigned nine investigators to the case. The BEI are not an independent investigation unit and they receive technical assistance from Montreal police in examining cases. This means that in Québec, police are always involved in investigating police.

This is the second SQ-involved death of a civilian in four days.


Quebec Provincial Police (SQ) Shoot and Kill Distressed Man in Shawinigan (Jan, 17, 2020)

Quebec’s provincial police force (Sûreté du Québec, SQ) shot and killed a man in the evening of January 17, 2020, in Shawinigan, a city northeast of Montreal. The Bureau des enquetes independantes (BEI), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in the province, report that police responded to a 911 call around 9:30 PM with regard to a man who appeared to be distressed who was allegedly chasing a taxi.

According to the BEI, an SQ officer shot and killed the man because he “approached police in a menacing way.” No details have been provided publicly on what this rather vague description actually involved. Appearing to be menacing shot not be a reason to be shot and killed. This is another example of why police should not be called when someone is experiencing distress.

The BEI has assigned nine investigators to examine the case.


Fifty-Year-Old Man Dies During Arrest in Laval, Quebec (June 28, 2019)

A 50-year-old man died during an arrest at a home in Laval, Quebec in the early hours of June 28. Quebec’s Bureau of Independent Investigations (BEI), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in the province, is investigating the death. The BEI reports that police were called to a residence on 35th Avenue just after midnight following reports of a “violent family dispute.” The nature of the dispute and the man’s part in it have not been released publicly. The BEI do report that the man was being handcuffed and was on his knees when he stopped breathing. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Eight BEI officers have been assigned to investigate the killing.


Killer Cop Patrick Ouellet Gets 8 Months for Killing Five-Year-Old Nicholas Thorne-Belance

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.


Video Shows Montreal Police Shoot Nicholas Gibbs in the Back (Black Lives Matter)

On August 21, 2018 Montreal police shot and killed 23-year-old Nicholas Gibbs, a young Black man. He was shot five times, twice in the back. On October 30, 2018, eyewitness video of the police killing of Nicholas Gibbs was released publicly by the Gibbs family and their support network. The video clearly shows that Nicholas Gibbs posed no direct threat to police when he was killed. Police shouted at him in French only, though Gibbs spoke English. The family has announced a lawsuit against the Montreal police.

Nicholas Gibbs was the father of three young children. A fundraising campaign has been established to support the Gibbs family through this awful time. Families of people killed by police are not eligible for any of the state support that is now made available to victims of criminal acts.

The fundraising campaign can be accessed here: https://www.gofundme.com/justice-pourfor-nicholas-gibbs

The video (Warning: it shows Nicholas Gibbs killing by police): https://www.facebook.com/NoBordersMediaNetwork/posts/458611824546185