2 police officers charged in death of London-area woman

These are violations by the Ontario Provincial Police officers dealing with the Criminal Code of Canada, Controlled Substance and Abuse Act, Customs and Excise Act, etc.

2 police officers charged in death of London-area woman

Postby Thomas » Sun Jul 16, 2017 3:58 pm

An OPP constable and an officer with the London Police Service are each facing charges in connection with the death of a London-area woman.

The province’s Special Investigations Unit says London police responded to a 911 call in the area of Trafalgar Street and Highbury Avenue North in London on the evening of Sept. 7, 2016.

Police placed 39-year-old Debra Chrisjohn, of the Oneida Nation of the Thames, into custody before transferring her to the OPP’s Eglin County detachment on an outstanding warrant.

Just before 8 p.m., OPP officers transported Chrisjohn to St. Thomas Hospital after she went into medical distress. She was pronounced dead just before 9 p.m.

The cause of death has not been released.

The SIU have charged OPP Const. Mark McKillop and LPS Const. Nicholas Doering each with one count of criminal negligence causing death and one count of failing to provide the necessaries of life.

Both officers are scheduled to appear in court in London at the end of the month.

http://www.680news.com/2017/07/13/2-pol ... rea-woman/
Thomas, Administrator

User avatar
Thomas
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1403
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:18 pm
Location: Canada

Local Police Officers Charged In Woman’s Death

Postby Thomas » Sun Jul 16, 2017 3:59 pm

A London police officer and an officer with Elgin OPP are facing charges in the death of a woman in 2016.

Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit announced the charges against OPP Constable Mark McKillop and London police Constable Nicholas Doering on Thursday. The charges stem from the September 2016 death of 39-year-old Debra Chrisjohn.

According to the SIU investigation, a 911 call was made in the late afternoon hours of September 7, 2016. London police officers were called to the area of Trafalgar St. and Highbury Ave. Chrisjohn was arrested by London police, and transferred to the custody of Elgin OPP on an outstanding warrant.

Just before 8pm that night, she was taken to hospital in St. Thomas. She was pronounced dead at 8:43pm.

Constables McKillop and Doering are each charged with one count of criminal negligence causing death and one count of failing to provide the necessaries of life.

They are to appear in court on July 31.

“The matter is now properly before the courts,” the SIU says in a statement released Thursday. “In consideration of the fair trial interests of the accused, the SIU will make no further comment.”

A spokesperson for London police says Constable Doering has been placed on “administrative duties.”

http://blackburnnews.com/london/london- ... ans-death/
Thomas, Administrator

User avatar
Thomas
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1403
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:18 pm
Location: Canada

OPP AND LONDON POLICE CONSTABLE CHARGED FOLLOWING WOMAN'S DE

Postby Thomas » Sun Jul 16, 2017 3:59 pm

The province's Special Investigations Unit (SIU) has charged an OPP officer and a member of the London Police Service in relation to the death of a woman last fall.

Officers were called to to the area Trafalgar Street and Highbury Avenue on Sept. 7, 2016.

Debra Chrisjohn, 39, was arrested by police and was transferred to Elgin County OPP on an outstanding warrant.

At 7:52 p.m., OPP officers transported Chrisjohn to a St. Thomas hospital where she was pronounced dead at 8:43 p.m.

As a result of the SIU investigation, OPP Cst. Mark McKillop and London Police Cst. Nicholas Doering are each facing one count of criminal negligence causing death and one count of failing to provide the necessaries of life.

Both officers will appear in court on July 31.

The SIU is an arm’s length agency that investigates reports involving police where there has been death, serious injury or allegations of sexual assault.

http://www.iheartradio.ca/newstalk-1290 ... -1.2829530
Thomas, Administrator

User avatar
Thomas
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1403
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:18 pm
Location: Canada

SIU announces charges against London and OPP constables in d

Postby Thomas » Sun Jul 16, 2017 4:00 pm

SIU announces charges against London and OPP constables in death of Oneida woman

Two police officers charged in the 2016 death of an Oneida woman remain on the job, one of them still on active duty.

Ontario’s police watchdog announced Thursday London police Const. Nicholas Doering and OPP Const. Mark McKillop are charged with criminal negligence causing death and failing to provide the necessaries of life in the death of Debra Chrisjohn.

McKillop, a six-year OPP veteran, remains on active duty, while Doering has been assigned to administrative duties, said police spokespersons, both of whom declined to comment further, citing the SIU probe.

Chrisjohn, 39, died Sept. 7, 2016, after she was arrested in east London by London police and then turned over to Elgin County OPP on an outstanding warrant, the Special Investigations Unit said. She was taken to St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital where she died that night, the SIU said.

The SIU investigates cases involving police resulting in injury or death.

Robert Chrisjohn, Debra’s father, said in a statement released by their lawyer that the family was devastated by her death and has many unanswered questions.

“Why didn’t the police take her to the hospital sooner when they knew she was sick and needed help? The police arrested her and were responsible for making sure she was OK. This happens way too often in our community. This happens all the time. The police just don’t seem to care.”

Caitlyn Kasper, a lawyer at Aboriginal Legal Services who represents the family, said the charges against the officers are the start of a long legal process.

“Aboriginal Legal Services has long been concerned with the relationship between Indigenous communities and the police. This is an important issue not just for Debra’s family, but for all Indigenous People across Ontario.”

Chrisjohn was the mother of 11 children and the grandmother of two children. Her family has she said battled addiction and had frequent scrapes with the law but was trying to turn around her life before she died.

Chrisjohn had started on methadone, planned to go back to school and was living with her father on the Onedia Nation of the Thames First Nation southwest of London, her younger sister Cindy Chrisjohn told The Free Press last September.

Debra Chrisjohn had joined an event-planning committee in the community, her sister said.

Cindy Chrisjohn said in September the family had many questions about her sister’s death. They had been told Debra Chrisjohn had been arrested, went into “medical distress” and was taken to St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital.

“I just don’t want her situation to fall on deaf ears. I really want a good investigation into this. I want followup,” Cindy Chrisjohn said.

She said she feared her sister’s death would “swept under the rug” because she was Indigenous.

Family members last saw Debra Chrisjohn in downtown London the day she died and she “didn’t look good,” Cindy Chrisjohn said.

The SIU said a London police officer responded to a report of a woman obstructing traffic near Trafalgar Street and Highbury Avenue in the late afternoon on Sept. 7, 2016.

The officer arrested Chrisjohn and transferred her to the custody of Elgin County OPP on an outstanding warrant, the SIU said.

Paramedics took Chrisjohn, 39, to the St. Thomas Elgin General hospital shortly before 8 p.m.. where she died less than an hour later, the SIU said.

Citing the charges before the court, the SIU said it’s not releasing any further information about the case, one of 63 investigations the watchdog opened involving OPP and civic police officers in Southwestern Ontario last year.

The watchdog laid charges against 20 police officers in 17 incidents across Ontario in 2016, a charge rate of 5.3 per cent of the 296 cases the SIU completed last year.

One police watcher says allowing charged officers to keep working erodes public trust in police.

“How can someone from the public feel safe when there’s an officer out there . . . who has been charged with a criminal offence?” said Erick Laming, a University of Toronto doctoral student specializing in policing issues.

“It’s very rare to see officers who have been criminally charged be on active duty,” he said.

Doering is the fourth London police officer to be criminally charged — the third by the SIU — in the past two months. All remain on the job.

Under the Police Services Act, the police chief can decide whether to suspend a charged officer with pay.

Ontario is the only province in Canada that requires suspended officers to still be paid, Laming said.

“In all other jurisdictions, the chief of police has the discretion to suspend them without pay.”

http://www.lfpress.com/2017/07/13/two-p ... -chrisjohn
Thomas, Administrator

User avatar
Thomas
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1403
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:18 pm
Location: Canada

Grand chief ‘dismayed’ OPP officer remains on duty

Postby Thomas » Sun Jul 16, 2017 4:01 pm

A distressed Indigenous woman died after being held in custody because police considered a shoplifting charge more important than getting her back to hospital, a lawyer for an Aboriginal advocacy firm charged Friday.

“That to me is incredibly infuriating,” Caitlyn Kasper of Aboriginal Legal Services in Toronto said.

The fact an OPP officer remains on active duty while facing charges in the death shows the continued lack of understanding and respect police in Ontario show Indigenous peoples, she charged.

“The confidence the family and the public have in police is definitely eroded,” said Kasper. “It definitely sends the message police aren’t taking the matter seriously.”

Oneida First Nation member Debra Chrisjohn, 39, died Sept. 7, 2016 after she was arrested by London police, then handed over to Elgin OPP on an outstanding warrant.

The day before, London police had arrested Chrisjohn — her family says she was accused of breaking into cars.

Chrisjohn struggled with mental illness and addiction, and London police took her to hospital, said Kasper, who is representing the woman’s family.

But police left Chrisjohn at the hospital unattended and she left without being treated, her family says.

London police arrested Chrisjohn again the next day for causing a disturbance in traffic.

Instead of taking her to hospital again, police transferred her to Elgin OPP because she was wanted for shoplifting, Kasper said.

“We are talking about a shoplifting charge. Police are criminalizing mental health and substance abuse issues,” she said.

“There has to be better options in how police handle people in Indigenous communities, especially women,” Kasper added.

Ontario’s police watchdog, the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), announced Thursday that London police Const. Nicholas Doering and OPP Const. Mark McKillop are charged with criminal negligence causing death and failing to provide the necessaries of life in Chrisjohn’s death.

Doering has been assigned to administrative duties. But McKillop remains on active duty, the OPP said.



The grand chief of the Association of Iroquois and Allied Nations, Joel Abram, called on the OPP to explain the decision to keep an officer charged with criminal negligence on active duty.

“Right now, they owe the family an explanation,” said Abram, a member of the Oneida Nation who knew Chrisjohn. “We are discouraged and dismayed by the fact the officer remains on duty.”

A civilian oversight agency with the power to lay criminal charges, the SIU has laid charges of criminal negligence causing death and failing to provide the necessities of life only a handful of times since the watchdog was established in 1990.

Prior to Chrisjohn’s death, the SIU had charged just three police officers with failing to provide the necessities of life, while six officers were charged with criminal negligence causing death, according to statistics provided by an SIU spokesperson Friday.

Doering is the fourth London police office to be criminally charged in the past two months.

Police Chief John Pare appealed to the public for patience while the cases are dealt with in court.

“Members of the London police service are professionals that come to work each and every day to do the best job they can to make our community safe. They respond to calls for service with the goal of helping those involved — it is a difficult job.” Pare said in an email response to Free Press questions Friday.

“As with any person charged with a criminal offence, our officers deserve to be treated fairly and have the right to their day in court, where the justice system will have the opportunity to review and weigh all of the evidence in its entirety.”

It’s unclear the Office of the Independent Police Review Director, the provincial agency that investigates complaints against police, is probing the actions of the officers involved in the Chrisjohn’s death.

Spokesperson Camille Williams said she couldn’t divulge whether Doering or McKillop are the subjects of an investigation, citing the OIPRD’s policy of not publicizing conduct probes until they’re completed.

Those investigations, handled by the OIPRD or referred back to the police force involved, could result in a Police Services Act hearing.

“The hearing decision is made public and we post those on our website,” Williams said.

Justice Michael Tulloch took aim at the OIPRD in his recent report on police oversight in Ontario, saying many people don’t have faith in the agency or even know about the its existence.

Tulloch highlighted Indigenous people’s distrust of the OIPRD and their fear of police retribution for filing a complaint.

“This concern was particularly acute for First Nations communities served by the OPP. Members of these communities told me that if they raised their concerns about the OPP, then their communities may suffer,” Tulloch wrote in his 263-page report.

http://www.lfpress.com/2017/07/14/grand ... ns-on-duty
Thomas, Administrator

User avatar
Thomas
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1403
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:18 pm
Location: Canada

Family of indigenous Ontario woman who died in custody speak

Postby Thomas » Sun Jul 16, 2017 4:02 pm

Family of indigenous Ontario woman who died in custody speaks out

The family of a First Nations woman who died in police custody in Ontario says her death is part of larger widespread tensions between police and indigenous communities.

Relatives of Debra Chrisjohn say they still have questions about what happened to the 39-year-old from the Oneida Nation of the Thames despite the fact that two police officers are now facing charges in her death.

Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit announced Thursday that Const. Mark McKillop of the Ontario Provincial Police and London, Ont., police Const. Nicholas Doering are charged with one count each of criminal negligence causing death and failing to provide the necessaries of life.

Both interacted with Chrisjohn at some point between her arrest on Sept. 7, 2016 and her death later that night.

A lawyer representing Chrisjohn’s family says any future discussion of the officers’ conduct needs to focus on why they did not seek medical attention for Chrisjohn when it should have been apparent that she required help.

She says Chrisjohn’s death is an example of what she calls the problematic relationship between police forces and indigenous communities across Canada.

“What happened to Debra is not an isolated incident,” said Caitlyn Kasper with Toronto’s Aboriginal Legal Services. “It is very obvious that it isn’t these types of issues just in London or the Oneida First Nation. It’s a concern we hear about in Toronto, all across Ontario and all across Canada.”

Robert Chrisjohn, Debra’s father, said the family has been devastated by his daughter’s death.

“Why didn’t the police take her to the hospital sooner when they knew she was sick and needed help?” he asked in a public statement issued Friday. “The police arrested her and were responsible for making sure she was okay. This happens way too often in our community. This happens all the time. The police just don’t seem to care.”

Details of Debra Chrisjohn’s final hours are still vague, though the SIU released some information in announcing the charges against McKillop and Doering.

The SIU, which probes incidents involving police where someone is killed, injured or accused of sexual assault, said Doering was among those who responded to a call for a traffic obstruction on Sept. 7 in London.

Police found Chrisjohn at the scene and arrested her, only to discover that she was wanted on an outstanding charge in nearby Elgin County. Kasper said that outstanding charge was for shoplifting.

She and the SIU said Chrisjohn was transferred from the custody of London police to the provincial force to answer to the outstanding charge.

At some point during that time Chrisjohn went into medical distress and was rushed to the St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital. She was pronounced dead there later that night.

The SIU has declined to offer further comment on the case, since it is now before the courts.

Both Kasper and the SIU declined to release the cause of death, but Kasper said police had enough information on hand to handle Chrisjohn’s case differently.

She said Chrisjohn, who had a documented history of both substance abuse and mental illness, had interacted with London police officers just the day before her death.

On that occasion, she said police did not arrest her but instead took her to hospital for treatment. She said the family feels officers should have responded the same way the following day, adding there were clear indications that Chrisjohn needed medical attention rather than time in police custody.

Kasper said Chrisjohn’s relatives are pleased that officers are now facing charges, but said they’re bracing for a lengthy legal process.

She said the ensuing case should focus on what she called the “foundational relationship” between police and indigenous people from coast to coast, saying current headlines are rife with examples of how the troubled dynamic plays out.

She pointed to the need for a national inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, which has recently been mired in controversy among a spate of resignations from key staff members and even a commissioner.

She also cited recent deaths of several indigenous people in Thunder Bay, Ont., who were all pulled from a local river after moving to the city from remote northern communities. Indigenous leaders have called upon the RCMP to take over a probe into those deaths, citing a lack of trust in either city or provincial authorities.

http://nationalpost.com/pmn/news-pmn/ca ... 4b037f5838
Thomas, Administrator

User avatar
Thomas
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1403
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:18 pm
Location: Canada

How does a police force decide what to do when active office

Postby Thomas » Sun Jul 16, 2017 4:05 pm

How does a police force decide what to do when active officers face criminal charges?

2 Ontario officers charged after a woman died in police custody

The family of an Indigenous woman who died while in police custody is questioning why two police officers facing charges in her death are still on active duty.

Ontario's Special Investigations Unit charged two police officers Thursday in connection with 39-year-old Debra Chrisjohn's death.

Chrisjohn was arrested in London on Sept. 7, 2016, after reports of a woman disturbing traffic in the city's east end. She was arrested by London police and transferred to the Elgin County OPP detachment on an outstanding warrant.

Paramedics took Chrisjohn to a hospital in St. Thomas where she later died.

Her cause of death has not been released.

OPP Const. Mark McKillop and London police Const. Nicholas Doering are facing charges of criminal negligence causing death and failing to provide the necessaries of life.

Both officers are still on active duty.

A lawyer for Chrisjohn's family said they are disappointed in the decision.

"The family overwhelmingly does not believe that officers who are being charged with these type of offences should be on the street and still acting on that role, whatsoever," said lawyer Caitlyn Kasper.

The London police have placed Doering in an administrative role. The Elgin County OPP said that McKillop remains on active duty.

"The administrative is the more appropriate response," said Kasper. "But in terms of an active officer that's completely inappropriate."

How the decision is made

Murray Faulkner, a retired London police chief, did not comment on this specific case but explained to CBC News how a police force determines what action to take when an officer faces criminal charges.

"The decision solely lines within the hands of the chief of police," which for the OPP would be the commissioner or high-ranking officer, said Faulkner.

Faulkner said that the police force would conduct a parallel investigation into the conduct of the officers while the SIU investigates the incident.

A report is filed to the chief of police separate from the SIU investigation, and it's up to the chief to decide what steps to take.

Faulkner said there are three options:

- Suspending an officer with pay.
- Placing an officer on administrative leave.
- Keeping the officer on active street duty.

Ontario does not have legislation to suspend an officer without pay.

Problem-filled process

The internal investigation is done parallel to the SIU investigation, and some detachments have concerns with how the process is handled.

"This whole practice has been filled with tension and filled with problems," said Ronald Bains, executive director of the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police.

Bains said that the SIU investigations need to be completed quicker and with more transparency.

Last March Justice Michael Tulloch released a report about Ontario's three police watchdogs, including the SIU.

The report contains 129 recommendations to make police watchdogs more transparent and accountable. Four of his recommendations have been implemented.

"We are in support of the vast majority of Justice Tulloch's recommendations," said Bains.

"If those recommendations are implemented, some of the issues — or most of the issues — would be resolved."

"I think the major issue is the lack of confidence and trust that everyone has … because the whole process is not very transparent," said Bains.

He said that he believes the SIU investigations are done competently.

"One of the major recommendations that Justice Tulloch is making is that those reports in the large part need to be made available to the public," said Bains.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/london/ho ... -1.4205176
Thomas, Administrator

User avatar
Thomas
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1403
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:18 pm
Location: Canada


Return to Federal Statutes Violations

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron