Father and son file $4M lawsuit against TTC over violent Union Station confrontation

A father and son who were caught on camera in an altercation with transit enforcement officers two years ago are suing the TTC for $4 million.

Russell and Jamie Gillman are seeking damages after altercation with transit officers in Jan. 2015

Jamie (left) and Russell (right) Gillman have filed a $4 million lawsuit against two transit enforcement officers and the TTC, after a confrontation at Union Station in Jan. 2015. (CBC)

A father and son who were caught on camera in an altercation with transit enforcement officers two years ago are suing the TTC for $4 million.

Jamie, 35, and Russell Gillman, 64, say they want accountability on the TTC's part, and some understanding as to why the officers did what they did. 

The two were involved in a violent brawl with two TTC special constables after an NHL game on Jan. 29, 2015. The fight was caught on video, which has been viewed more than half a million times.

Michael Smitiuch, the Gillmans' lawyer says all charges against the two men were dropped last month, and they've filed a damages suit against the two officers and the transit commission.

"Both the Gillmans and the public deserve assurances that this sort of incident won't be repeated," Smitiuch said in a statement.

"We have not been given any information about why they were cleared and on what account, and that's troubling," said Russell. "The TTC needs to be held accountable for the recruitment, training and supervision of these individuals."

In a statement to CBC Toronto, the TTC said the matter was turned over to Toronto police, who cleared the two officers of wrongdoing in August 2015. They would not comment any further, stating the matter is now before the court.

A screengrab from a YouTube video of the brawl at Union Station shows a TTC special constable, left, arresting Jamie Gillman, after the two had exchanged blows on Jan. 29, 2015. (Jorge Pinzon/YouTube)

Russell says he still uses the TTC, but is much more vigilant now.

"When I go through Union station, that's probably the worst place where I'm impacted because it brings back feelings of anxiety and restlessness," he said.

Jamie says he still struggles to understand what happened when he ran to help his father that night.

I was fearful for his life.- Jamie Gillman

"I would hope that the TTC officers were trained to de-escalate any situation," he said. "It seemed they were there to escalate the situation."

"I was fearful for his life," he said about seeing his dad being punched and thrown. 

Jamie says the incident left a severe mental and psychological toll on him, which has been tough to deal with over the last two years.


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