Thousands expected at slain officer's funeral
Toronto police expect thousands of mourners to pack a downtown convention centre for the funeral of Sgt. Ryan Russell, who was killed in the line of duty this week.
The funeral will be held Tuesday at 1 p.m. ET at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre's South Building on Front Street West.
"There will be a fairly significant procession of uniformed officers that will come from across the country and even North America to pay their respects to our fallen officer," police Chief Bill Blair said Friday.
The funeral will be open to the general public and plans are also being made to televise the proceedings.
The funeral will be preceded by visitations at Jerret Funeral Home on Yonge Street in Thornhill between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. on Sunday and 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday.
People have also been signing a condolence book for the fallen officer at Toronto police headquarters on College Street in downtown Toronto.
Russell, 35, died when he was struck while trying to stop a stolen snowplow truck being driven erratically through the city early Wednesday morning.
He was knocked to the ground and suffered fatal head injuries. Russell, an 11-year Toronto police veteran, had a wife, Christine, and a two-year-old son, Nolan.
Russell's family has issued a statement thanking members of the police service and the public for their "outpouring of love and support, thoughts and prayers."
Richard Kachkar, 44, of no fixed address, was shot and arrested by police after an hour-long pursuit. He remains in hospital and has been charged with one count of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder.
Russell is the first Toronto police officer to die in the line of duty since Const. Laura Ellis was killed in a car crash on her way to a robbery investigation in 2002.
The latest Ontario policing death happened last March, when Ontario Provincial Police Const. Vu Pham died after a shootout near Wingham.