police brutality

To Serve and Protect?

An unpublished letter to the Toronto Star written by Susan E. Helwig after witnessing the police use excessive force.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

To Serve and Protect:

How do Toronto’s finest do their job?

Around 5 p.m., on August 22, 2010, police officers were called to deal with a man who collapsed on the floor of the southbound Spadina streetcar.

The man was breathing, in a deep sleep, possibly affected by alcohol or a medical problem.

Three officers propped him up, tried to wake him, asked how much he had drunk and whether he was diabetic. The man seemed to be Chinese and may not have understood.

One officer told him: We’re the police, we’re here to help.

Then, they carried him stumbling off the streetcar.

Three or four police surrounded the man outside the streetcar, which was stopped beside a shelter.

There was shouting, and I heard a bang.

The next thing I saw was the man, in handcuffs, bleeding at the mouth.

Police were responsible for his injuries.

Whom were they serving?

Whom were they protecting?

Susan E. Helwig

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s