Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Toronto Cop to Face Disciplinary Hearing after Investigation Sparked by Video

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Toronto Cop to Face Disciplinary Hearing after Investigation Sparked by Video

Article excerpt

Toronto officer to face disciplinary hearing

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TORONTO - A disciplinary hearing will be held for a Toronto police sergeant after a civilian oversight agency found there were grounds to believe he used excessive force in stomping on and repeatedly Tasering a handcuffed man during an arrest earlier this year.

The Office of the Independent Police Review Director says Sgt. Eduardo Miranda was not justified in deploying his stun gun six times on a man who, on most of these occasions, was "prone face down on the ground and being physically controlled by four officers."

In a report into the January incident, the agency says Miranda's decision to stomp on the man's leg was "equally not justified as a response."

It further says there are grounds to believe the sergeant engaged in discreditable conduct when he directed other officers to interfere with a witness who was recording the arrest on his phone.

The report says there are grounds to believe two other officers engaged in misconduct when they threatened to confiscate Waseem Khan's phone and behaved in a manner meant to intimidate him, and that all the officers involved neglected their duty by failing to turn on their cruisers' cameras and microphones.

The investigation was triggered after Khan, who captured much of the incident on video, lodged a complaint with the oversight agency.

Khan's lawyer, Selwyn Pieters, says the findings against Miranda automatically require a disciplinary hearing, which has been scheduled for Sept. 26. It is unclear whether the remaining officers will also face a hearing, since they are accused of lesser offences, he said.

Pieters said his client is pleased that the report confirmed his feeling that "something wasn't right with what was taking place" that day.

"It just shows the importance of what Waseem did on that day, to take his camera out on his cellphone and record that incident," Pieters said. "Had he not done that, it would have been this civilian versus the police with no objective evidence."

The cellphone video shows several police officers standing by a man who is lying face down on the street. …

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