Sammy Yatim was killed on a streetcar in Toronto’s west end just after midnight ET Saturday. Much of the incident was captured on amateur video.
What we do know is that the entire incident transpired in about 10 minutes. Just after midnight, Yatim reportedly stood up and brandished a knife on the 505 streetcar on Dundas Street West near Trinity Bellwoods Park.
A few minutes later, police arrived at the scene. At that point, Yatim was alone on the stationary streetcar. A standoff quickly ensued, and within the space of 13 seconds one officer had fired nine shots.
There are many questions and on the surface, the amateur video looks pretty damning. Having said that – let us wait until the official inquiry is complete before rushing to judgement.
Our cops do a difficult job, and the level of hostility that has been leveled at them over the last few days sickens me. Protest all you want, but getting into a persons face and screaming at them isn’t what I would call civilized protest. I know what would happen if you did that to me, and the cops are showing remarkable restraint.
The second point is that I am very disappointed in the Chief of Police – he has already suspended the officer and established a separate investigation. This is not normal process and in my eyes has shown this officer has already been thrown to the wolves. Isn’t it the role of the SIU to investigate things like this? If the SIU is ineffective, then deal with that. Do NOT play politics – just let the SIU get on with its job. If it whitewashes or tries to whitewash the investigation – then deal with that, but until they do, let them work. Our police, just like our citizens deserve that due process be observed when a potential crime is being investigated. Anything less is just another word for mob justice.