Like the other three RCMP officers, Constable Bill Bentley stated Robert Dziekanski "grabbed a stapler and came at members screaming."
Paul Pritchard's video showed Dziekanski was backed up against a table with his hands up.
At his inquiry, Justice Braidwood called their nearly identical explanations "shameful", "patently unbelievable", and "deliberate misrepresentations of what happened for the purpose of justifying their actions".
Yesterday B.C. Supreme Court Justice Mark McEwan found Bentley not guilty of perjury :
"It is quite possible that the Pritchard video did not capture the gestures several witnesses observed that would be consistent with Mr. Bentley's note that Mr. Dziekanski 'came at' the police because it was taken from behind Mr. Dziekanski."Possibly this video from yesterday failed to capture a few gestures also.
Six years it's taken to get to this travesty.
On Paul Pritchard's video, before the officers even encounter Dziekanski, one is heard calling out "May I taser him?" and another replies "Yes".
There R far too many examples such as this one, to insist an independent board of inquery be established for 'all' policing (RCMP/CITY). It only takes one rogue cop to sour the team.
I expect much the same miscarriage of justice, despite the compelling video evidence, in the police murder of Sammy Yatim in Toronto last weekend.
We are so totally shocked by the verdict are we not, Alison ? ? ? ?
Well, aside from the CBC commenter(s) who appear to believe anything north of speaking mildy out of turn or looking at a cop should be punishable by summary execution, the outcry over this is refreshing. At some point, something.must.give. This is not a sustainable state of affairs.
In 2008 RCMP watchdog Paul Kennedy issued a scathing report on RCMP over-reliance on the use of tasers as well as RCMP failure to implement measures recommended by Justice Dennis O'Connor's federal inquiry that would prevent another Arar incident, warning :
"The cumulative effect of these trends over time may reduce the degree of co-operation of the public that is essential to public safety in Canada."
Naturally the Harper government's response was first to half his office's budget and then to fire him.
Even if there was a truly "independant" watchdog. We will still have to rely upon the police to provide testimony. This is where everything falls down.
The "close the ranks" mentality that pervades ALL police forces everywhere has finally been opened a tiny crack by handheld video's and the internet.
Time for the police to realize that they are probably being filmed when performing any arrest and they should actually tell the truth? Even if it means being ostrasized by their coworkers?
What a novel concept.
Nonconfidencevote : See next two posts. I had not realized that officers' notes are still being vetted and, according to the Ontario Ombudsman, even written up by police lawyers.
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