Chaotic scene on Dallas streets during sniping of police officers

Posted November 21st, 2018 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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Two snipers shooting 11 police officers and killing at least four during a rally in Dallas, Texas created a terrifying situation for hundreds of peaceful marchers, who quickly fled from the scene as the sound of bullets reigned overhead.

Video footage from many people has surfaced on social media, showing that protesters were marching along a street in downtown, about half a mile from City Hall, when the shots erupted and the crowd scattered, seeking cover.

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READ MORE: Snipers kill officers, wound multiple others at Dallas protest; suspects still at large

“Go! Go! Go!” says one woman, who posted video on 长沙桑拿会所 the moment marchers heard shooting and quickly began running in the opposite direction.

“Somebody got shot!”

One of the most shared videos, by Michael Kevin Bautista, shows a number of officers seeking cover behind police cars in front of a tower.

“They’re shooting right now, and there’s an officer down right now,” he says.

“Oh my god, there’s people laying on the ground,” said @allisongriz, as she recorded video where multiple gunshots could be heard.

So far, there are no reports of any of the marchers being hit by the snipers, who are still at large.

The protesters had gathered after a Minnesota officer on Wednesday fatally shot Philando Castile while he was in a car with a woman and a child in a St. Paul suburb. The aftermath of the shooting was purportedly livestreamed in a widely shared Facebook video.

Brittany Peete, a demonstrator, said she didn’t hear the gunshots, but she “saw people rushing back toward me saying there was an active shooter.”

Peete said she saw a woman trip and nearly get trampled as people ran to get to safety.

“Everyone just started running,” Devante Odom, 21, told The Dallas Morning News. “We lost touch with two of our friends just trying to get out of there.”

Carlos Harris, who lives downtown told the newspaper that the shooters “were strategic. It was tap tap pause. Tap tap pause.”

‘We feel those injustices’: Rally held in Edmonton after deaths of 2 black men in U.S.

Posted November 21st, 2018 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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Approximately 200 people gathered in Edmonton on Friday night to protest the recent killings of black men in the United States.

The Stop Killing Us rally was held at Centennial Square and was organized by a group called Finding the Antidote for Injustice and Racism.

READ MORE: Alton Sterling’s 15-year-old son weeps during his mother’s emotional speech

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The event included a vigil for Alton Sterling and Philando Castile followed by poetry, music and messages from speakers.

Sterling was killed early Tuesday morning by police officers in Baton Rouge, La. while Castile was killed in his car early Thursday morning in Falcon Heights, Minn. also by a police officer.

READ MORE: Philando Castile’s girlfriend speaks out after fatal shooting, says police ‘took his life for no reason’

“The black community is grieving. Their community of allies is grieving. We need a place for mourning. We need a place to come together with our community,” co-organizer Kassia Haynes said.

“We feel pain even if it’s not just in our city. We feel those injustices even if they’re not here. I think we see ourselves and Edmonton reflected in what’s happening in the rest of the world.”

READ MORE: Police officer blasts ‘racist’ colleagues after Alton Sterling’s death

Edmonton-Centre MLA David Shepherd attended the rally. He said, as an elected official, he felt it was important to be on hand to hear from fellow Edmontonians about their experiences with racism to make sure they know their voices are being heard.

“This is an important public conversation. I think a lot of the difficulties and issues that we have with systemic racism and other things happen because these aren’t conversations that are being had openly and honestly,” Shepherd said.

The MLA admits he grew up “pretty privileged” and apart from a few incidents in high school, said he hasn’t felt like he’s been targeted because of the colour of his skin. But he also knows that it doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.

“As I’ve been reading and learning and listening about the black experience in the U.S. and parts of Canada and even sometimes here in Edmonton, I’ve come to realize it’s a difficult thing.

“There’s issues of systemic racism and there are things that we need to be able to talk about openly as a society to be able to address them.”

Haynes said it is devastating that situations where people of colour are killed by police are still happening. She helped organize a similar rally in 2014 after 18-year-old Mike Brown was killed by a police officer.

“It’s dehumanizing that we keep seeing the same narrative play out over and over and over again without feeling that anything is changing,” she said.

Haynes said some members of Edmonton’s black community still encounter racism and racial profiling.

“We can’t get lost in this being an American issue. This is a Canadian issue as well.”

She said organizers plan to ask the City of Edmonton to have more transparency and dialogue with the city’s black community.

Attendee Staci Layne-Linton said it was “amazing” to see so many people of different races, ethnicities and ages at the event.

“It makes me feel like…the whole city is coming together. As a city, we are standing here,” she said.

“I think as a community to come together – it isn’t an us and them – we are all one. We are all united as one. We all bleed the same colour red.”

With files from Caley Ramsay, Global News. 

Video of assault on a UBC student by a transit officer released

Posted November 21st, 2018 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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The most brutal blows of the assault lasted just nine seconds as Transit Police Cst. Edgardo Diaz Rodriguez delivered 10 baton strikes to his victim’s head, neck and back – all over alleged fare evasion.

That was in 2011. Today, the video of the assault was released, a month after Diaz Rodriguez was sentenced.

Josh Paterson, Executive Director of the BC Civil Liberties Association, says the attack, which was captured on surveillance video at the Rupert Street SkyTrain station in August 2011, clearly demonstrates excessive force.

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“It’s shocking to see this kind of force used particularly when someone is running away. They’re clearly not posing any threat to officers if they are trying to get away,” he said.

The victim, then 22 years old, was at the SkyTrain station to meet a friend. When his friend ended up taking the bus instead, he went to leave and was confronted by two transit cops on the stairs over his unpaid fare. The former UBC football player told the officers he wasn’t even taking the train but they decided to issue him a violation ticket anyways. He provided his full name but the officers didn’t believe him so he was arrested for obstruction. When he tried to flee, he was tackled, punched and then subject to a brutal baton beating by Cst. Diaz Rodriguez.

Diaz Rodriguez pleaded guilty to assault causing bodily harm this past May. Last month he apologized in court during his sentencing – admitting he lost control of the situation, and was handed 12 months probation.

“One has to imagine that if any of us were at the SkyTrain station and took out batons and started to hit someone in this way that many times we would most likely be looking at jail time,” said Paterson.

Diaz Rodriguez is still the subject of two Police Act probes into the baton beating, which could end in his dismissal from the force. But the officer, who was also suspended for eight days last year after being found guilty of neglect of duty under the Police Act for an incident in 2013, remains on the job with pay doing administrative duties.

Transit Police spokesperson Anne Drennan is confident a similar situation will not repeat itself.

“There was an interim police chief at the time – a completely different regime and executive. I can tell you that the chief today and his executive would not have made the same decisions that were made five years ago, it would have been a very different situation,” she said.

Drennan also said excessive force by Transit Police officers is not condoned.

“When something like this happens and one of our own is found guilty of something like this and there is video that comes out like this that will shock people…we feel that it makes all of us look bad and none of us like that.”

The victim, whose identity is protected by a court order, just wants to move on with his life, telling Global News that some of the blows he took were harder than any of his football hits – and that night changed his life in more ways than you can imagine.

Petition created to save Kinsmen Park Playground from deconstruction

Posted August 24th, 2019 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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The Kinsmen Play Village was once a busy place for families, but now it’s gated off and set for deconstruction next week.

“We live in the neighborhood. I have a four-and-a-half-year-old son and a two-year-old daughter and we’ve been using the park on almost a daily basis for four years,” said local resident Kurt Soucy.

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    READ MORE: Saskatoon Transit increasing bus frequency on 8th Street corridor

    Not anymore, but Soucy isn’t alone.

    Robin Hansen also enjoys the playground with her two-year-old and isn’t going to let it go without a fight.

    “There really is no good reason so I thought I’d create an online petition and see if I’m the only one or not,” Hansen explained.

    The University of Saskatchewan associate law professor’s petition to re-open the Kinsmen Play Village has gained almost 500 signatures in four days.

    As a part of a master plan created by the City of Saskatoon over five years ago, it was decided 90 per cent of the Kinsmen playground would be moved to Ashworth Holmes Park in Caswell Hill as part of an accessible destination playground. In its place, a new larger play structure, now known as the PotashCorp Playland, would be built close to the rides.

    After deconstruction the area will be seeded and landscaped so it can be a usable park space. The open area will allow for the expansion of cross-country ski loops in the winter.

    “In the end of the master plan we had some folks suggest we keep the play village, but a broader majority wanted a new large-scale play structure closer to where the rides are,” said Lynne Lacroix, recreation and community development director with the city.

    READ MORE: Over 100K potholes filled so far on Saskatoon streets

    Lacroix explained the master plan was developed with consultation from the public. Ten workshops with stakeholders, children and the general public made up the key input.

    But according to Hansen’s research, only 280 people gave their feedback and now almost 500 people have signed the petition against the choice. For her it’s a clear choice to keep Kinsmen Play Village.

    Both Hansen and Soucy argue the old area is perfect for parents with children under five. Both of their families won’t be able to use PotashCorp Playland until their children are older, rendering the space unusable until then.

    “The new playground is nice, but it doesn’t render the old playground obsolete,” said Hansen, “Rather than closing this playground, it should be re-opened and the money that was allocated towards its demolition be transferred instead to purchase a new play structure for Caswell Hill.”

    Hansen will be presenting her case to the planning, development and community service committee of city council on July 18.

    But according to the city – not much can be done at this point.

    “We already have signed contracts with construction contractors in two locations,” Lacroix said. “We are in full process and they’re expected to begin work early next week.”

Senator Mike Duffy on deadline to pay back $17,000 or seek arbitration

Posted August 24th, 2019 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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The Senate is giving Mike Duffy until July 23 to decide if he will pay back nearly $17,000 or seek arbitration.

Even though Duffy has been cleared of all criminal charges related to his expenses, the Senate still considers $16,995 worth as inappropriate spending. The clerk of the Standing Committee on Internal Economy sent the senator a letter on June 8, outlining why they think he owes the Senate money.

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    READ MORE: Mike Duffy’s expenses under scrutiny again

    “New information surfaced in the public domain including the judgement as well as additional supporting documentation, which warranted an assessment of the eligibility of some expenses,” Nicole Proulx’s June 8 letter reads.

    Those expenses include $10,000 for the services of personal trainer Mike Croskery, $300 for a makeup artist, a $500 payment to one of Duffy’s office volunteers, Ashley Cain, in 2010 and $8 for personal photos.

    His lawyer, Donald Bayne, told Global News in late June that the Senator’s nearly two-year suspension from the upper chamber lacked due process and resulted in the former journalist’s net loss of $155,876. According to Bayne, asking to repay $8 for personal photos “smacks of petty vindictiveness.”

    If Duffy doesn’t act, the Senate will deduct funds from his pay cheque.

    With files from Mike Le Couteur and the Canadian Press

Federal health minister discusses opioid crisis on Blood Tribe

Posted August 24th, 2019 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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Chief and council from the Blood Tribe First Nation, along with community members, physicians and police met with federal health minister Jane Philpott Friday morning to address the ongoing opioid crisis in Canada.

The reserve, located 43 kilometres southwest of Lethbridge, has been making strides to combat the dangerous drug in southern Alberta.

“This problem isn’t a Blood Tribe problem,” said Chief Charles Weaslehead. “It’s a national problem.”

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READ MORE: Health Canada approves Naloxone nasal spray to combat ‘opioid crisis’

The opioid fentanyl has been responsible for hundreds of deaths in Alberta since the start of 2015.

After losing 18 residents last year, the Blood Tribe proclaimed a state of emergency in March 2015. Since then, officials have been working tirelessly to combat addiction in the community.

“The Blood Tribe was the first, and perhaps one of the leaders in acknowledging that there was a problem,” Weaslehead said.

The efforts of the Blood Tribe have not gone unnoticed. Philpott travelled to Standoff to speak with community leaders about the exceptional steps that police, tribe officials and health care workers have taken to battle drug addiction.

“To see the determination among these folks, the leaders here, they’re highly professional, and really well prepared,” Philpott said. “They are absolutely determined to respond to this in an effective way.”

READ MORE: Blood Tribe man says drugs, alcohol addictions can be beat

Titus Aragon, 22, is living proof of the life-saving measures the community has undertaken. He was addicted to fentanyl for two years, and tried to quit nearly a dozen times before he sought help from a medical doctor.

“There were so many people waiting for treatment, and I had to wait two months,” Aragon said. “I was ambitious to get off of it, instead of waiting those two months, I went to the doctor and I waited there until she eventually did take me in.”

Aragon said seeking treatment was the best decision he ever made.

It is stories like Aragon’s that show the challenges that communities are facing. The Blood Tribe is doing the best it can with limited resources.

“We’re willing to tackle this,” Weaslehead said. “We’re in it for the long haul, but we need some support.”

READ MORE: Fentanyl 101 – the facts and dangers

The community is confident this session will provide the health minister with tangible facts and information she can use to develop a comprehensive plan that will ultimately save lives.

“There’s much more to be done, but I think they’re in a very good position and will in fact be leaders for the country,” Philpott said.

Friday’s meeting is just the first of many conversations that the federal government plans to have with communities across the country with hopes of ending the fatal cycle of drug abuse.

8th edition of Montreal Comiccon kicks off this weekend

Posted August 24th, 2019 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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MONTREAL – Comiccon has become an annual tradition in Montreal and it’s back for its eighth edition at the Palais des Congrès, where thousands of fiction lovers are expected to congregate this weekend.

Comiccon has become a huge attraction, not just for science fiction lovers but for celebrities as well, said spokesperson Jason Rockman.

He said the event will be more inclusive than years past.

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We have a really good representation of all aspects of pop culture. We got Darryl McDaniels from Run DMC, who is a rap legend and who is also a comic publisher,” said Rockman.

“If you’re a fan of Orange is the New Black, we’ve Kate Mulgrew who plays Red on the show. We have Ryan Hurst from Sons of Anarchy.”

Montreal organizers also invited David Lloyd, the illustrator of V for Vendetta. Lloyd is the author who turned the mask of Guy Fawkes into an international symbol of civil disobedience.

“It’s amazing to me that something sort of sprung off the pages into real life,” he said.

“It could be used in any demonstration anywhere by people who actually feel aggrieved about something, and it helps them put a collective face to what they’re resisting.”

This year, Comiccon will be paying a special tribute to the Star Trek 50th anniversary.

WATCH BELOW: William Shatner signs Montreal Golden Book

Paul Forest, has been touring with Comiccon as Spock Vegas from Star Trek, has been raising funds for epilepsy research.

“The 50th anniversary is celebrated everywhere. This is my number 58 in a year and a half,” said Forest. “For me, it’s to give back. It’s for the fans.”

Fans at Comiccon will have the chance to take selfies, dress up as their favourite superhero and, most importantly, let their inner geek loose for a weekend.

“The idea is to be in a environment where people can express themselves. They dress up. They put time and money, and I think they feel at ease to be themselves.”

Comiccon is expected to attract 60,000 people this weekend.

Streets of Steinbach expected to fill with hundreds of pride parade supporters Saturday

Posted August 24th, 2019 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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STEINBACH, MAN. —; From a march on the sidewalk to a full fledged parade through downtown, Steinbach is expected to welcome at least 1,000 supporters to its first ever pride parade.

A gay pride parade that was initially declined a permit for street access because RCMP told organizers it was due to safety concerns and construction on the route. June 29 it was approved after being pushed to re-assess. A new route but the same day, Saturday July 9 at 10:40am.

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Organizers said Saturday’s event will be a historical moment and looks like it’s attracting attention internationally.

“We know that there’s people coming from Vancouver. Some were planning family visits anyway and will be here. There’s people coming from Ontario. We know there’ll be people from Alberta. We know there’s people coming from Florida. I just heard there’s going to be someone from France coming.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau may not be able to attend but he has sent his support for Steinbach Pride and will have a personal message sent on his behalf.
Pop music sister duo Tegan and Sara have sent their support via twitter, and many others are speaking out about how they feel the parade should have been approved all along.

Winnipeg’s Club 200 and the University of Winnipeg’s Students Association have rented buses to take supporters there as well.

But, as organizers and supporters get ready to join an expected one-thousand participants on the streets of Steinbach, the city still remains divided.

Many residents said they will not participate, nor will they condemn them or judge them, but will rather pray for the people taking part in the pride parade. Others said they’re happy the parade is happening and they will even try and attend to show their support.

The city may be divided, but they are united in their hopes that all will remain peaceful at Saturday’s parade.

RELATED: Steinbach Pride Parade granted street access for march

‘It is what makes me happy’: Lethbridge pair lives the barefoot life

Posted July 24th, 2019 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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LETHBRIDGE – It’s uncommon to see people walking the streets barefoot but for 39-year-old Lilian Blackmore and 25-year-old Sierra Codizal, it’s the only way they leave the house.

“It is what makes me happy. I haven’t looked back. I donated most of my shoes,” said Codizal.

The pair get looks and oftentimes comments.

“They range from ‘Oh my God, are you okay?’, ‘Do you need help?’  Someone thought I wandered away from a mental institution, once,” added Codizal.

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Blackmore, who recently celebrated her second barefoot anniversary, has had people offer to buy her shoes. But this is her way of life.

“It’s my challenge to make Lethbridge the first barefoot-friendly city in Canada,” said Blackmore.

“None of grocery stores have issues. None of the banks have issues with people being barefoot.”

She has a Facebook page in hopes of educating and inspiring others to embrace the no-shoe movement.

“If someone wants to be barefoot for the day, it’s not because they are joining me in a group, it’s not a bandwagon. It’s just they are allowed to do it.”

However, one Lethbridge podiatrist doesn’t recommend it for everyone.

Dr. Drew Williams said people with high arches, flat feet or diabetes are most at risk of injury.

“If they were to do it in a situation like that, they will want to examine the foot more closely and really just be honest with themselves,” said Williams.  “If they are feeling good and doing well, great. But if they are suffering and struggling, they may want to re-evaluate why they’re doing it.”

Both Blackmore and Codizal said they have experienced health benefits by going barefoot. But they advise anyone interested in transitioning to it to take it slow.

“You have to build up your tolerance and if you don’t build up the strength, you will get injured,” said Codizal.

The pair hopes that greater awareness will encourage more people to walk a mile in their birth shoe.

New Edmonton police officers sworn in, reflect on Dallas shootings

Posted July 24th, 2019 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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Thirty-five recruits were sworn-in as the latest members of the Edmonton Police Service, amid a tragic scene south of the border that saw five police officers killed.

A graduation ceremony for the 25 male and 10 female recruits was held Friday at City Hall.

READ MORE: ‘We feel those injustices’: Rally planned for Edmonton after deaths of 2 black men in U.S.

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Acting Chief Tony Harber said he addressed the recruits Friday morning about the shooting in Dallas, Texas. The incidents happened Thursday night during a demonstration against the police shootings of two African American men this week, Alton Sterling and Philando Castile.

READ MORE: Suspect in Dallas police shooting that killed 5 cops ‘wanted to kill white people’

“I think it’s something we think about all the time,” he said about the hazards of the job.

Harber does not think gun violence in Canada is escalating but he did admit there are more weapons on the streets.

READ MORE: What we know about the 5 police officers killed

“There are certainly more guns, but it’s nothing at all like what’s being experienced south of the border,” he said.

“It’s a completely, completely different environment than the one Dallas police are working in.”

Harber said the main difference is people in Canada are not allowed to openly carry firearms.

Mark Eversley said he became a police officer to better serve his community.

“I felt this was a good chance to help people so here I am,” he said.

Eversley said the shootings in Dallas were on his mind as he and his colleagues were sworn in.

“It’s always in my thoughts. You never want this to happen. It’s a pretty bad tragedy but this is the risk that we take being police officers,” he said.

“I feel we are in a position to protect the people who can’t protect themselves. This is why we are here. [The shootings in Dallas] don’t change what I’m here to do.”

Edmonton shuts down Fort McMurray wildfire donation centre at Kingsway Mall

Posted July 24th, 2019 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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Emergency operations in Edmonton are beginning to return to normal after helping thousands of people forced out of northern Alberta due to the Fort McMurray wildfire.

The Edmonton Emergency Relief Services Society announced Friday the donation pick-up centre at Kingsway Mall for Fort McMurray residents will close its doors on July 13. Normal operations will resume at the downtown location in early August.

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    “It gives us a chance to be able to continue to help out all of Edmonton in the ways that we were as well as continue to help those affected by the wildfires,” Nicole Geoffroy, spokesperson with the EERSS, said.

    READ MORE: Fort McMurray wildfire: Edmonton Expo Centre sees 17,000 evacuees

    In the days following the mass evacuation on May 3, thousands of Fort McMurray-area residents made their way to Edmonton to receive much-needed services like shelter, clothing and toiletries.

    To try and help keep up with the demand, a donation pick-up centre was opened for Fort McMurray residents in the old Target location at Kingsway Mall.

    Geoffroy said the EERSS has offered assistance to 72,000 new people over the past three months. She said operations wouldn’t have been possible without the help of Kingsway Mall.

    “Having the large amount of space, having the loading dock, having the ability to have families here line up so that we could continue to help hundreds of families at a time,” she said. “They were absolutely amazing with us.”

    READ MORE: Fort McMurray wildfire: Tens of thousands of evacuees helped by Edmonton Emergency Relief Services Society

    The downtown facility will reopen on Aug. 2. The EERSS will continue to help Edmonton residents and Fort McMurray evacuees by appointment only.

Supreme court creates new timely-trial framework

Posted July 24th, 2019 by admin and filed in 长沙夜网
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OTTAWA – The Supreme Court of Canada, citing a “culture of complacency” in the justice system, has set out a new framework for determining whether a criminal trial has been unreasonably delayed.

In a potentially groundbreaking 5-4 decision Friday, the high court said the old means of determining whether a person’s constitutional right to a timely trial had been infringed was too complex and unpredictable.

The Charter of Rights and Freedoms says someone charged with an offence has the right to be tried within a reasonable time.

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Under the new framework, an unreasonable delay would be presumed should proceedings — from the criminal charge to conclusion of a trial — exceed 18 months in provincial court, or 30 months in superior court.

However, these benchmarks are not set in stone.

The Crown could challenge the notion that a delay is unreasonable by demonstrating “exceptional circumstances,” a majority of the court said in its reasons.

These circumstances could include something unforeseen and beyond the Crown’s control, such as a sudden illness, or a case requiring extradition of an accused from another country. They might also arise in “particularly complex” cases that involve disclosure of many documents, a large number of witnesses or a significant need for expert evidence.

In addition, a delay may be unreasonable even if it falls below the newly prescribed time limits. However, the defence would have to establish that it took meaningful steps to expedite the proceedings and show the case lasted “markedly longer” than it should have.

The Supreme Court said that as a transitional measure for cases already in the system, the new framework must be applied “flexibly and contextually.”

The court said a key problem with the previous system, which flowed from a 1992 high court ruling, was that long delays were considered reasonable unless the accused could show there was actual harm to his interests — a consideration that will not figure in the new framework.

The right to be tried within a reasonable time is central to the administration of Canada’s criminal justice system, wrote Justices Michael Moldaver, Andromache Karakatsanis and Russell Brown on behalf of the majority.

“An unreasonable delay denies justice to the accused, victims and their families, and the public as a whole.”

However, unnecessary procedures and adjournments, inefficient practices and inadequate institutional resources have been “accepted as the norm and give rise to ever-increasing delay,” the ruling said.

The old framework failed to address this “culture of complacency,” and participants in the justice system — police, Crown counsel, defence lawyers, courts, provincial legislatures and Parliament — were not encouraged to “take preventative measures to address inefficient practices and resourcing problems,” the court said.

The Supreme Court made the decision in ruling that the British Columbia drug convictions of Barrett Richard Jordan must be set aside due to an unreasonable delay.

In a dissenting opinion, a minority of the court agreed the charges against Jordan should be stayed, but called the new framework for gauging delays “unwarranted and unwise,” saying it could lead to thousands of prosecutions being tossed out.

If time limits are to be set out, Parliament — not the court — should do it, wrote Justice Thomas Cromwell on behalf of the minority, which lamented a lack of evidence on which to set the ceilings of 18 and 30 months.

“For the vast majority of cases, the ceilings are so high that they risk being meaningless,” Cromwell said. “They are unlikely to address the culture of delay that is said to exist. If anything, such high ceilings are more likely to feed such a culture rather than eliminate it.”

In a companion decision Friday, the Supreme Court affirmed that Kenneth Gavin Williamson’s sexual assault convictions should be stayed due to delays in his case.

A majority of the court said that at nearly three years, the relatively straightforward case took far longer than it should have, and the delay was unreasonable under either the old or new framework.

Penticton veterinary hospital celebrates anniversary

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Penticton is home to one of only four B.C. SPCA locations equipped with an animal hospital and on Friday, the facility celebrated its one year anniversary.

While Penticton Veterinary Hospital has been treating sick and injured pets for over a decade, this time last year its new operator, the B.C. SPCA, took over.

WATCH BELOW: SPCA opens first of its kind animal hospital in Okanagan

The previous owner of the hospital, Dr. Steve Harvey, was a local veterinarian who served the community for more than two decades.

He retired in 2015, but wanted to keep the legacy of the hospital alive.

“The B.C. SPCA worked with Dr. Harvey to acquire the hospital. So the hospital is  now fully operated and managed by the B.C. SPCA,” senior business manager for the B.C. SPCA, Dragana Hajdukovic said.

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    Over the past year, the hospital’s reach has expanded, now helping animals from communities throughout the south Okanagan.

    More services have also been added such as spay and neuter clinics.

    “We’ve spayed and neutered over 500 animals in the past year. We are also part of a feral cat program within Penticton to spay and neuter some of those guys out there to help them with the over population,” veterinarian, Dr. Michael Tigchelaar said.

    Tigchelaar said the clinic has expanded enough to work with other animal rescue organizations in the south Okanagan like the South Okanagan Rehabilitation Centre for Owls and the Okanagan Humane Society.

    All revenues at the B.C. SPCA clinic in Penticton go right back to the hospital.

    The celebrate the one year anniversary since the SPCA’s acquisition of the hospital, it held an open house.

    Watch above as Global News speaks to staff as well as those in attendance and see some of the animals that have been cared for at the clinic.