Hamilton

4 charged in protest outside People's Party event in Hamilton last month

Four people have been arrested and charged in connection with a protest outside a People's Party of Canada event featuring Maxime Bernier last month in Hamilton.

1 connected to Toronto restaurant that closed temporarily amid death threats

An elderly woman was confronted as she arrived for an event held by People's Party Leader Maxime Bernier in Hamilton on Sept. 29. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press)

Four people have been arrested and charged in connection with a protest outside a People's Party of Canada event featuring Maxime Bernier in Hamilton on Sept. 29.

One of those charged by Hamilton police is a man whose Toronto family restaurant closed temporarily this month after receiving a barrage of death threats and hate mail.

The death threats came after the man was identified as one of the masked protestors who attempted to block an elderly woman using a walker and another man from entering the event at Mohawk College.

A video of the confrontation was shared worldwide on social media in the days after the protest, garnering millions of views.

Violent clashes broke out at the protest as members of the public and People's Party supporters, who had bought tickets to the event, were confronted by a group of roughly 100 protesters. 

Four people were arrested on the day of the protest, Hamilton police said, and all were later released unconditionally.

The charges were laid after Hamilton police "reviewed numerous hours of video" from the protest "from a number of sources including media and social media footage."

A group of around 100 protestors gathered outside Mohawk College's McIntyre Art Centre to protest an event featuring Bernier and YouTube personality Dave Rubin on Sept. 29. (Justin Mowat/CBC)

Two men turned themselves in to police on Oct. 23, Hamilton police said, and one man was arrested on Oct. 22.

Hamilton police announced that a fourth person, 23-year-old Victoria Wojciechowska, was also arrested on the morning of Oct. 23. She was charged with theft under $5,000 and wearing a disguise with intent, said Insp. David Hennick.

Alaa Al Soufi, 27, has been charged with two counts of intimidation, two counts of wearing a disguise with intent and causing a disturbance, according to a release from Hamilton police. 

Hennick confirmed Al Soufi was arrested for allegedly blocking the path of the elderly woman with a walker. Police are still searching for two female suspects involved in that incident.

Kevin Metcalf, 33, has been charged with one count of obstructing police.

Maximiliano Herrera, 30, has been charged with one count of intimidation and one count of level one assault.

The investigation continues. 

About the Author

Justin Mowat

Reporter/Editor

Justin Mowat is a journalist and a filmmaker. Reach him at: justin.mowat@cbc.ca