Sunday, December 12, 2010

G20, New Thoughts, Part 2

Watch Toronto G20 Exposed. If you want to see what was ACTUALLY experienced by people downtown, those who live there, those who got there by chance, and those who were their by choice. However they got there, you NEED to see that movie. If you see what has happened, and hear/see what was said and done at the time, this folks is why we need a public inquiry. There is, without any shadow of a doubt, that major abuses were committed that week. This is the biggest blight that could EVER come down on the Police forces, and yet, NOTHING is being done. There are various small inquires without teeth going on. As we’ve seen this week, the Police can be shamed into helping with the investigations, but that only goes so far. The Police did NOT co-operate with the SIU until the new video came out. Even on the first video, those individual officers could be identified to the satisfaction of the court, but somehow NOT to the satisfaction of the SIU. If grainy footage is all the police have to go on in the course of a normal investigation, they go to the public with it. They did not do that in this case. They could have. Someone OTHER than other officers knows them too. We now ‘know’ the names of those officers involved. 14 of them in total. So…after the new video came out it took a total of ONE DAY to get to 14 identified officers. Now they say they’ve co-operated. That’s a load of bull. They ONLY co-operated when they were called out on it. Chief Blair was called out on his ‘doctored and armed’ comment, which he then had to retract. The web of lies is slowly unravelling. The Ombudsman report has shown that Blair lied about who asked for and who knew about the PWPA. Then, to deflect, the police mislead the public about what the Report was about. It was NOT about the arrests, it was about the implementation and use of the regulation. That was his job. And he did it. Without the help of the officers who were identified using the PWPA in inappropriate locations. This means that either the officer didn’t understand his orders (a fault of the brass), or overstepped his duties (a fault of the officer). Either way, the officers who did this, and were identified by the Ombudsman, were protected by the Police Chief and were not allowed to talk to the Ombudsman after two requests. By talking to the officers involved, the report could have also contained details such as:
- When did the officers receive their briefing about this law
- How much information was given to them
- How ACCURATE was the info given to them
- How were the officers briefed
- What was in the actual briefing notes

These questions are fundamental to the report, about how it was enacted and how it was USED, which is what his prevue was. Therefore, it WAS appropriate for the Ombudsman to question the involved officers, despite what the Police Chief has indicated. If his job was to review the implementation and use of the law, than those who implemented it and used it are the very FIRST people you need to interview. There is NO GOOD reason why the police would refuse. Other ongoing investigations are NOT looking at the implementation of that law. No one currently charged is being charged with a PWPA offence. Therefore, there is no ‘protecting investigations’ going on here. It’s clear-cut avoidance of something that would have made them look bad.

The more we allow everyone to delay the needed public inquiry; more and more evidence can be hidden or destroyed. The police and politicians and anyone else involved NEED to be held accountable for all that has been done. This is NOT as simple as one or two people being fired, resigning, or not being re-elected. This is much more complex than that. How can more than 1100 people be arrested, some 300 charged, 200 of THOSE subsequently dropped, meanwhile, they’re asking US to identify the vandals that they seem to claim they were arresting the next day. How is it that charges can be made under the PWPA, and then, when the individual gets to court on his appointed day be told the charges may have been lost in the mail? That is ludicrous. There is NO WAY that this kind of thing should be happening in civilized society. And that people can still think that the cops should have beaten MORE people makes me physically sick.

Before I watched the documentary, I was pissed at what happened. I was there; I saw a lot of things that would NOT be allowed to happen on a daily basis. And, contrary to what is being said, there is NOTHING in law that defined that Friday, Saturday and Sunday, from any other Friday, Saturday, or Sunday. Meaning that if they can’t do it today, they couldn’t do it then. From everything that I saw that weekend, though some of the searches may have been legal, the vast majority were anything but. Put it this way, I have the same chance of carrying something ‘illegal’ today as I did on that day. Yet, when I was out today, I wasn’t searched. There also something deeply troubling when you hear eyewash being claimed as a weapon, or goggles.

Maybe it would have been better if the ISU and more specifically the Toronto Police to have googled “G20” before the summit to see what would likely happen, and say the reasons why people had things that were far from illegal. I’ll give you a hint, its protection FROM the cops. Pepper Spray and Tear Gas into peaceful crowds seems to happen a lot. Therefore, people are now protecting themselves while exercising their rights.

At a certain point, there will be too many lies uncovered for the narrative to withstand scrutiny. There will be a bloodlust for heads to roll over this. There WILL be private prosecutions against officers who think that they are above the law. There will be justice for all those who were wronged during the G20. Sad thing is, for some of us, there won’t be any compensation for what happened. There is no compensation for those who were illegally detained and searched, but not arrested or have anything confiscated. Currently, the only potential compensation that people like me have is the ability to say I was right, you were wrong. And frankly, that’s not good enough. The totality of what happened must come to light. The public needs to know what happened inside the jail, since all we have are horror stories from the detainees and sunshine and lollipops from the police. The tapes tell the story in context. Release those tapes. Most of the people still charged will want those tapes as evidence FOR them, so, as long as they agree, release them. None of these trials will likely go to a jury, so you don’t have to worry about tainting the jury pool either. If you’re worried that releasing them will jeopardize the other investigations going on, then say so. Releasing them however, will not jeopardize your independent review, as it is only a review, and you’re not likely to press any charges against your officers.

It should be blatantly obvious by now that the police had no idea what they were doing, and then over-reacted in a show of force that can only be described as excessive.
Once again, anything MORE THAN what is needed to affect an arrest is excessive. If the arrest is not legal, than ANY force used is deemed excessive.

Beating a reporter being held by two cops is excessive.
Forcibly strip searching a non-resisting person is excessive.
Strip searching a person in front of a group IN PUBLIC is excessive and sexual harassment if not worse.
Telling non-protesting kettled neighbourhood residents to move, when they can’t, and then beating them is excessive.
Ripping a man’s prosthetic leg off and telling him to walk, and when he can’t, drag him and injure him, is excessive.
Sitting on someone’s torso, beating them, while another officer digs his thumb into the neck of the person, causing them to almost pass out…is excessive.
“Searching” a woman by pawing at her breasts and rubbing her vagina is not excessive…it’s closer to fucking rape!

What is clear to me, is that this is going to get MUCH worse before it gets better. Many officers likely know who these offensive officers are. This is going to be as bad for them, as it is for us when all the information comes out. If any officer stood by, while a criminal offence was being committed, they are just as guilty as the ones committing the offence. That’s the law that the citizens are ruled by, that’s the law that the cops should live under. All that does however is make the wall of silence even thicker. Not to mention the fact that if officers do come forward, their lives may be at risk on the job as well… It’s a tricky situation.

We CAN get to the bottom of all of this. It’s just going to take a full public inquiry.

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