JUDGE: POLICE NEED CLEAR REASON FOR STOPPING, QUESTIONING PEOPLE

Jan 04, 2019

By Bob Komsic

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The Ontario judge,  who reviewed the province’s regulations on random police street checks, says officers should only be stopping people for questioning if they have a clearly defined reason.
(Frank Gunn/Canadian Press)
In discussing his report, released earlier this week, Court of Appeal Justice Michael Tulloch says valid street checks with a purpose have often been confused with ‘carding,’ which sees officers randomly stop people.
The judge says that’s a specific subset of street checks that needs to stop as it disproportionately targets racialized communities and wastes police resources. 
”In my view, it is far better to use our limited resources to focus on individuals, who are reasonably suspected of committing an offence, rather than using valuable manpower to question thousands of people ‘not’ reasonably suspected of anything,” said Tulloch.
He adds valid street checks can be helpful for investigators and recommends ways the provincial government can clarify regulations around them for police and the public.
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