Toronto

James Forcillo arrested by Toronto police for allegedly breaching bail terms

Const. James Forcillo, the Toronto police officer convicted in the 2013 shooting death of Sammy Yatim, was arrested by Toronto police on Wednesday for allegedly breaching his bail conditions.

Suspended Toronto officer convicted of attempted murder violated conditions relating to house arrest, SIU says

Toronto police have charged Const. James Forcillo with one count of failing to comply with recognizance after he allegedly breached his bail conditions. (Nathan Denette/Canadian Press)

Const. James Forcillo, the Toronto police officer convicted in the 2013 shooting death of Sammy Yatim, was arrested by Toronto police on Wednesday for allegedly breaching his bail conditions.

Monica Hudon, spokesperson for the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), said Forcillo had violated a number of bail conditions relating to his house arrest. 

"The condition that was breached was around officer Forcillo's principal residence," said Toronto Police Association president Mike McCormack, noting Forcillo had been residing with his ex-wife. 

"It's a very difficult time." 

Forcillo and his wife Irina divorced in July, according to court documents previously obtained by CBC Toronto, although she is still listed as a surety under his bail conditions. 

McCormack stated a court date had been set for next week to obtain a bail variation that would amend Forcillo's principal residence, which would have allowed him to move out from the home he shared with his ex-wife.

Forcillo surrendered at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday, according to Toronto police. He was charged with one count of failing to comply with recognizance.

"Given the situation where you're living under the same roof with your spouse and you're separated and going through that, it must be a lot of stress for everybody concerned," McCormack said. 

Forcillo appealing 6-year prison term

In January 2016, Forcillo was found guilty of attempted murder for continuing to shoot at Yatim while the 18-year-old was lying on the floor of an empty Toronto streetcar in June 2013.

He was sentenced to a six-year prison term, and suspended without pay by the Toronto Police Service. His sentence is one year longer than the mandatory minimum sentence for the crime.

Const. James Forcillo was convicted of attempted murder in January 2016 for continuing to shoot at Sammy Yatim while the teenager was lying on the floor of an empty streetcar.

In July, he was released on bail pending his appeal of his conviction. Lawyers were in court last month and the matter is expected to be heard sometime in 2018.

In November, Forcillo had his bail extended days before he was set to turn himself in. He was to remain out of prison with strict conditions until April 2, 2018, or until the new evidence his lawyers say they have is introduced as part of the appeal process, whichever comes first.

The appeal process is broken into two stages. According to documents filed in court, stage one will see Forcillo's appeal lawyers push for an acquittal, new trial or a suspended sentence. 

The second portion of the appeal will examine the fresh evidence that, according to his legal team, shows Forcillo was under so much stress during the interaction that he sincerely perceived a greater threat than video evidence suggests.

Forcillo appeared in the Finch Avenue West courthouse on Wednesday. The charges will not affect his ongoing appeal from going forward.

A review of Forcillo's current bail conditions has been put over until Friday. He will remain in police custody until then. 

With files from CBC's Chris Glover