Aug 12, 2013

By Michael Kramer

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Toronto’s top cop, Bill Blair  has appointed retired justice Dennis O’Connor to help the  force in its review of all police practices, including use of force.

O’Connor presided over the inquiries into the province’s  Walkerton water tragedy and the torture of Maher Arar, a Canadian of Syrian descent.

The retired justice also sat on the Ontario Court of Appeal from 1998 until last year and served as the province’s associate chief justice for more than a decade.

Blair says  he’s asked O’Connor to make recommendations and examine best practices from around the world.

This comes a day before representatives for the families of seven people killed in police shootings are set to call for action to prevent other fatal encounters with police.

The family of 18 year old Sammy Yatim, who died last month after being shot by police on an empty streetcar, is scheduled to be among those appearing at a news conference Tuesday.

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