Here’s what reform of the Toronto police force should look like
Late last month, Michael Theriault, a Toronto police officer, was acquitted of aggravated assault and attempting to obstruct justice. But the off-duty officer was convicted of the lesser charge of assaulting Dafonte Miller. Theriault’s brother, Christian, was acquitted of all three charges.
The charges arose from an attack on 19-year-old Miller in 2016, when Miller and friends were allegedly caught “car hopping” and stealing from vehicles.
Coming in the wake of global protests around police killings and excessive use of force against Black people, Indigenous people and people with mental health issues, many are upset at the decision. Police in Canada have not escaped scrutiny, after videos of police shootings and what appears to be excessive use of force with minorities.
Due to the racial undertones of the attack and the horrific nature of the injuries sustained by Miller, Ontario Superior Court Justice Joseph Di Luca noted that the case, and others like it, “raise significant issues involving race and policing that should be further examined.”