James Forcillo trial: Timeline follows days after Sammy Yatim's death

A jury is now deliberating the fate of Const. James Forcillo, the Toronto police officer charged in the 2013 shooting death of 18-year-old Sammy Yatim. Here are some key dates worth knowing.

Everything you need to know about the case from shooting to trial

Sammy Yatim, 18, was shot multiple times on an empty streetcar in July 2013 after refusing to drop a knife he was holding.

A jury is now deliberating the fate of Const. James Forcillo, the Toronto police officer charged in the 2013 shooting death of 18-year-old Sammy Yatim.

Here are some key dates worth knowing in relation to the case:

July 27, 2013 — Forcillo shoots nine bullets at Yatim after a 50-second standoff in which he repeatedly yells at the teenager to drop a small knife the youth was holding. Yatim dies on the empty streetcar. The Special Investigations Unit — Ontario's police watchdog — begins its investigation of the incident.

July 29, 2013 — Forcillo is suspended with pay from the police force. Toronto's police chief says the force will do everything it can to answer all the questions surrounding Yatim's "tragic" death. Hundreds of people, including members of Yatim's family, take to the streets of downtown Toronto to protest the killing.

July 30, 2013 — Forcillo is publicly identified as the officer who killed Yatim.

Toronto police Const. James Forcillo, right, is charged with second-degree murder and attempted murder in the death of Yatim. (CBC)
Aug. 1, 2013 — A funeral is held for Yatim.

Aug. 8, 2013 — Ontario's ombudsman says he will probe what kind of direction the provincial government provides to police for defusing conflict situations in the wake of Yatim's death.

Aug. 12, 2013 — Toronto's police chief announces a review of police procedures, use of force and police response to emotionally disturbed people.

Aug. 19, 2013 — Forcillo is charged with second-degree murder in Yatim's death.

Aug. 20, 2013 — Forcillo is released on $510,000 bail.

Aug. 27, 2013 — Ontario's government announces it will permit all front-line police officers to carry stun guns. At the time of Yatim's death, only supervisors carried the conductive weapons.

February 2014 — Forcillo quietly returns to active duty at Toronto Crime Stoppers in an administrative role.

Ontario's police watchdog began investigating Yatim's death almost immediately following the fatal streetcar encounter. (Submitted by the Yatim family)
June 17, 2014 — Forcillo is committed to stand trial on his second-degree murder charge after the conclusion of a preliminary inquiry.

July 24, 2014 — Former Supreme Court of Canada justice Frank Iacobucci releases his report on the use of lethal force by Toronto police, which was sparked by Yatim's death. Among 84 recommendations, the review suggests that expanding police use of Tasers, equipping officers with body-worn cameras and educating them on mental-health issues could help prevent deadly use of force when dealing with those in crisis.

July 30, 2014 — Forcillo faces an additional charge of attempted murder in relation to Yatim's death.

Sept. 30, 2015 — Forcillo pleads not guilty to second-degree murder and attempted murder in Yatim's death.

Oct. 20, 2015 — Opening statements are delivered at Forcillo's trial in Toronto. Crown lawyers argue Forcillo's actions during his confrontation with Yatim weren't necessary or reasonable. His lawyer contends the officer's actions were justified and carried out in self-defence.

Nov. 25, 2015 — Forcillo takes the stand in his own defence, saying he never intended to kill anyone on the night he confronted Yatim.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?