1. Skip to navigation
  2. Skip to content
  3. Skip to sidebar

Possible motivation and the street protests continue; In The News for June 8

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Monday, Jun 8th, 2020

In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what’s on the radar of our editors for the morning of June 8 …

What we are watching in Canada …

HALIFAX — More than seven weeks after a man disguised as a Mountie killed 22 people in rural Nova Scotia, the RCMP have finally hinted at what may have motivated one of the worst mass killings in Canadian history.

Last week, RCMP Supt. Darren Campbell told a briefing that a behavioural analysis of the killer determined he was an “injustice collector” — a term that is well known among criminologists.

Michael Arntfield, a professor and criminologist at Western University in London, Ont., says injustice collectors are disproportionately middle-aged males who have tabulated an inventory of every perceived slight over the course of their lives.

They can nurture grudges for years. They often feel cheated or disrespected by others, even though there may be no evidence to support those beliefs. And these negative thoughts often get stuck on an endless, self-fulfilling loop.

Witness statements, documents and police disclosures confirm the killer, 51-year-old Gabriel Wortman, displayed many of these traits — though not all the time.

Wortman killed 13 people in Portapique before slaying another nine people the following day in several communities in northern and central Nova Scotia. He was fatally shot by a Mountie at a gas station in Enfield, N.S.

In a police document used to obtain a search warrant, one witness described Wortman as a smart psychopath who had been abused as a boy and was paranoid about the COVID-19 pandemic.

Also this …

MONTREAL — Thousands hit Montreal streets again Sunday to speak out in turn against racism, systemic discrimination and police brutality, following other Canadian communities that held marches this weekend.

Participants from different communities and of all ages crowded into a downtown Montreal square to listen to a cross-section of activists, community leaders, sports personalities and politicians before snaking peacefully through downtown Montreal to Dorchester Square, chanting “black lives matter” and “no justice, no peace” among other slogans.

They took a symbolic knee during the march — the second Sunday in a row the city has hosted one since the release of a video showing a white Minneapolis police officer kneeling on the neck of a black man, George Floyd, for nearly nine minutes.

Floyd fell still and died, the officer’s knee still on his neck.

His death has sparked demonstrations denouncing racism, violence and police impunity right across the globe and well-attended events were held Saturday in several Canadian cities, including Toronto, St. John’s, Calgary and London, Ont.

In Montreal, demonstrators called out Quebec Premier Francois Legault for his belief the province doesn’t have a systemic racism problem.

ICYMI (In case you missed it) …

Canada’s public safety minister says the government will be paying close attention to the independent inquiry into allegations of racism and police brutality brought forward by a First Nations chief, while another minister called the chief’s account “deeply troubling.”

Public Safety Minister Bill Blair, who is a former Toronto police chief, says in a tweet that the government is “deeply concerned” by the allegations, which were made Saturday by Athabasca Chipewyan Chief Allan Adam.

Adam told a news conference that he was beaten by RCMP officers and that his wife was manhandled in March when police stopped him for an expired licence plate outside a casino in Fort McMurray.

The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team, an independent body which investigates deaths or injuries involving police, said later that day that it will investigate the incident.

Adam is facing charges of resisting arrest and assaulting police, and RCMP say the officers needed to use force during the arrest.

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller says in a tweet that he’s spoken twice with Adam this weekend, and that he was disturbed by what the chief told him.

What we are watching in the U.S. …

Calls for deep police reforms gained momentum as leaders in the city where George Floyd died at the hands of an officer pushed to dismantle the entire department.

Floyd’s death sparked nationwide protests demanding a reckoning with institutional racism that have sometimes resulted in clashes with police, but many officers took a less aggressive stance over the weekend when demonstrations were overwhelmingly peaceful.

Two weeks after Floyd, an out-of-work black bouncer, died after a white Minneapolis officer pressed a knee on his neck for several minutes, a majority of the Minneapolis City Council vowed to dismantle the 800-member agency.

The state of Minnesota has launched a civil rights investigation of the Minneapolis Police Department, and the first concrete changes came when the city agreed to ban chokeholds and neck restraints.

Protesters nationwide are demanding police reforms and a reckoning with institutional racism in response to Floyd’s death, and calls to “defund the police” have become rallying cries for many.

Cities imposed curfews as several protests last week were marred by spasms of arson, assaults and smash-and-grab raids on businesses. But U.S. protests in recent days have been overwhelmingly peaceful — and over the weekend, several police departments appeared to retreat from aggressive tactics.

On Sunday, Floyd’s body arrived in Texas for a third and final memorial service, said Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo. A viewing is planned for today in Houston, followed by a service and burial Tuesday in suburban Pearland.

What we are watching around the world …

LONDON — Travellers to Britain are now being required to go into quarantine for two weeks — a sweeping measure meant to halt the further spread of COVID-19.

Starting Monday, all passengers will be asked to fill in a form detailing where they will self-isolate, with only a few exceptions. Those who fail to comply with the quarantine rules could be fined.

Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary says the quarantine will cause “untold devastation” for the country’s tourism industry — not just on the airlines.

He told the BBC that hotels, visitor attractions and restaurants will also be hurt, and thousands of jobs will be lost.

New Zealand, meanwhile, says it has eradicated the coronavirus from its shores after health officials reported that the final person known to have contracted an infection had recovered.

It’s been 17 days since the last new case was reported in New Zealand, and Monday also marked the first time since late February that there have been no active cases. Health officials caution that new cases could be imported into the country, which has closed its borders to everybody but citizens and residents, with some exceptions.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 8, 2020

The Canadian Press

Comments

  • No comments have been left yet, get the conversation started!

Leave a Comment Below

Sign in to comment.

All fields are required.

Want to embed media into your comment? Just paste in a URL in a separate paragraph to the page where you would normally view the media (like on YouTube) and it will automatically be embedded into your comment.