Police officer on trial - again
After one jury couldn't render a verdict, Toronto Officer Rick Shank is again on trial.
The jury was not able to come up with a verdict during the first trial, so today a second jury heard opening remarks from the Crown.
Police believe Shank has been unfairly charged with manslaughter for reasons having more to do with politics than justice. Many officers wear buttons that read,"I support Badge #6045,"Shank's badge number.
But the Crown made clear today it believes Shank used excessive force when he and a group of officers tried to arrest a suspected crack dealer named Hugh Dawson on Easter Sunday 2 years ago.
Police got a tip that day that Dawson had a gun in his car. Shank and others from the East Field Drug Command decided to find Dawson. In the end, Dawson was shot 9 times and no gun was found.
The first witness to take the stand was Altor Rouselle, who saw the attempted arrest with his family. Dawson backed his car into Rouselles' while attempting to flee from the police.
Rouselle told the Court today he saw police run up and smash the window on Dawson's car. He testified he was terrified and thought he was watching a gang fight unfold in front of his eyes. He said he went home and called 911 and was told the people he thought were gang members were in fact undercover officers.
The trial is set to last 6 weeks.