Saturday, June 27, 2020


Has anybody noticed a disturbing trend? A "suspect" gets beaten up by the police and then, in order to justify the extent of the beating, the police charge the suspect with resisting arrest. Talk about adding insult to injury. The case of Dafonte Miller has been a cause celebre since his assault in 2016 by two off-duty police officers. The 18 year old suspect of a minor offense was left bleeding, semi-conscious and totally blind in one eye after the two brothers, both police officers, were done with him including chasing him down in order to continue the beating.

What was also extremely disturbing was the approach of both the Toronto Police Service and the Durham (Regional) Police Service in their attempts to shield the Theriault brothers from being held to account for their actions. Charging the victim has become standard operating procedure for police forces and is yet one more reason to continue with calls for some form of police defunding. When it turns out that police actions have caused citizens to be in fear of their lives then drastic action is long overdue.

There was criticism of both law enforcement (police) as well as of the justice system. Both officers were acquitted of obstruction of justice and of aggravated assault. The one officer was convicted of assault only. The judge appeared to make it clear that the self-defence claims by both officers were "razor-thin" and unlikely although they could not be categorically disproven. It's hard to believe that non police officers in the same position would not have been convicted on more charges.

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