Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Verdict in Yatim shooting may be a classic compromise

TORONTO — It was a volley too far.

So said a jury Monday in convicting Toronto Police Const. James Forcillo of attempted murder in connection with the second round of shots he fired at Sammy Yatim in the teenager’s shooting death on a Dundas streetcar on July 27, 2013.

If the charge and finding make for curious law — Forcillo was charged both with killing and attempting to kill the same person and was acquitted of the more serious charge of murder — the verdict mirrors the widespread revulsion felt at the time by both civilian eyewitnesses and the broader public, who watched it happen almost as quickly as the actual witnesses thanks to iPhone video that was quickly uploaded online.

When Forcillo fired the second volley of six shots, Yatim was lying on his back on the floor at the front of the streetcar, effectively dying.

Though no one, least of all Forcillo, knew it then, the teen was mortally wounded, the constable’s first three shots having pierced his heart, shattered his spine and paralyzed him from the mid-chest down, and fractured his right arm.

Certainly, the slight teenager never got to his feet again.  (more...)

Further reflections:

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