Montreal

Montreal police officer's threat to tie homeless man to pole ruled 'excessive'

Montreal police officer Pierre-Luc Gauthier used intimidation and showed disrespect when he threatened to tie a homeless man to a pole outside on a day when temperatures hovered around –35 Celsius, Quebec's police ethics commission rules.

Incident happened in January 2014 with temperatures hovering around -35 C

Officer tells man he'll tie him to a pole if he continues disturbing people. 0:50

Quebec's police ethics commission has ruled a Montreal police officer used intimidation and showed disrespect when he threatened to tie a homeless man to a pole outside a metro station.

The incident happened in January 2014  on a day when temperatures hovered around –35 C.

Cellphone video posted to YouTube by a passerby shows officer Pierre-Luc Gauthier reprimanding a disheveled man who had been asking people for change. The man was dressed only in shorts and a T-shirt.

The officer tells the man he has to calm down and find a place to warm up. Then he tells the man he will tie him to a pole for an hour if he gets another complaint about his panhandling.

In its decision released Monday, the tribunal ruled Gauthier's threat was "excessive" and an "abuse of authority," regardless of his motivation.

Gauthier's partner, Vincent Marcotte, was also reprimanded for not stepping in to intervene.

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