Lawrence: Killing of on-duty police in Canada

Saturday 31 December 2022

Calvin Lawrence, Retired RCMP officer

The increase in death of Police Officers in Canada is cause for alarm

by Cal Lawrence

I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere  condolences to the family, friends and police colleagues, in the loss of life in this most unsettling year.  One police officer killed is too many.  This year we had five as of the writing of this article.

It is the Police Officers duty to protect the citizens from harm.  In performing this duty Police Officers must put their lives in harms way and risk their lives.  Police officers are warriors because while citizens run from harm the Police Officers run towards the gun fire.  

Ontario Provincial Police have confirmed Const. Grzegorz Pierzchala was killed in a shooting in Hagersville, Ont.

Ontario Provincial Police have confirmed Const. Grzegorz Pierzchala was killed in a shooting in Hagersville, Ont. 27 December 2022 © OPP / Handout

There are a number of reasons that has led to the toxic mix contributing to police shootings.

United States Influence in Canada

For much longer in The USA the Police Haters have acted out their killing of Police Officers by some of its citizens than in Canada. Like a slowly rising tide most of Canada is influenced in some way, shape, or form, by the United States Culture.  The increased killing of Police officers is no exception. Guns cross the boarder and so does ideas of police killings with those guns. The hatred of police has increased radially in the USA with the the Far Left and Far Right Movements.  Unfortunately this has showed up in Canada. We only have to exam some of the hate speech and threats in Canada towards the police.

Const. Devon Northrup (left) and Const. Morgan Russell are shown South Simcoe Police Service handout photos. The officers were killed after responding to a disturbance call at a home in Innisfil, Ont. on Tuesday night.Const. Devon Northrup (left) and Const. Morgan Russell are shown South Simcoe Police Service handout photos. The officers were killed after responding to a disturbance call at a home in Innisfil, Ont. on 11 October 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-South Simcoe Police Service

Mentally ill and Drug Infused People Killing Police Officers

With the reduction of mental health services people are left to fend for themselves and control their imaginary demons that appear all to real to them. It is often said that the 24 hour coffee and donut shops are the new mental institutions where the mentally ill seek refuge and lay their heads.  They roam the streets and take out their fears, anger, and frustration on the citizens and the police deal with the issues.  The police are seen by them as the enemy and it only takes a slight demise in their thinking to latch on to the Police Haters Club and take the life of a Police Officer.            

The unfortunate fact is I can get an illegal gun on the streets of a large city faster than I can get a Psychologist or psychiatrist.   

Couple this or even alone the drug culture will turn a driver or shooter into a killer of a citizen or Police Officer. 

Const. Shaelyn Yang, 31, worked in the Burnaby RCMP’s mental health and homelessness outreach team. She was killed in the line of duty on Oct. 18, 2022. (Supplied by RCMP)

Canadian Legislation

The Bail Reform Act was enacted in the 1970,s and since then it appears that the keeping people in jail for gun offences has been harder and harder also by using the charter.  

The Judges let these people out on the street 

.  Lawyers argue for their release on bail.  But yet neither Judges or Lawyers pay a price for the accuse/client killing a police officer or citizen when out on bail.  Stop referring to the system. People change systems.  People dismantle systems, and People keep systems going. People! It is time for a change.

Policing Has to revert Back and Move Forward

 The Police Killings have been more of Police ambushes rather than an attempt to get away by killers.  There seems to be more of a set up mind set to kill a Police Officer rather than “the Police Officer is going to catch me so I will have to kill the police officer to get away”.  There is also an increase is mass killings in Canada.  These are people who don’t mind taking police with them as they go out in a blaze of glory.  The police need better equipment, and more training. There approach to every call could never be taken as described; but now that statement is more important than ever.  The police must move forward in their anticipation of life threatening danger.

The police officers goal must revert back to getting to know who are the people in their communities. Walk the beat when possible. Talk to the citizens when possible.  Perhaps this will stop a mass shooting or an ambush of a police officer.  But most of all the average police officer has to be more hyper vigilant in relation to their safety. Nothing can be taken for granted.

Unfortunately society is angry, does not talk to each other, believe fake news, and is preoccupied with violence.  This toxic mix along with the other topics pushes some people to kill Police Officers. 

Social Justice Advocate Calvin Lawrence retired from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police after 36 years of service. He is the author of the book: “Black Cop”

2 comments

  1. Once again, our savvy Calvin Lawrence neatly encapsulates this escalating violence toward Police Officers while bringing us back to older techniques to working within the community.

    It is pure heart break to learn of the story of Cst. Greg. Nothing can sooth this tragedy.

    Calvin Lawrence promotes Community work such as walking the beat to get to know Community members while resisting the urge to further militarize Police. We don’t need more escalation, it’s time to get back to basic community policing and walking the beat.

    Like Calvin, I’ve prioritized walking the beat and I found it incredibly rewarding and meaningful. Not to mention the intelligence learned and crimes prevented. Mostly, I found that people felt safer knowing that a Constable could walk by at anytime.

    Canada is unique. Most don’t care for guns of any kind and it’s time to cement our peaceful country as safe from gun violence through legislation so that the Police Officer doesn’t encounter these violent offenders who can use any type gun to kill.

    My deepest sympathies to Cst, Greg’s family. My deepest gratitude to Calvin Lawrence for sharing his incredible insight and leadership.

    Ed

  2. Calvin, you make some saliant points based on your experience in law enforcement. ” I had sat with guys who said “lets go out and smoke a pig” a common vernacular, expressed by thousands of counter culture, hippie, armed revolutionary adherants of the late sixties era. Most were just talking shit, but some acted out their desire to create social-legal changes by any means nessesary. I wrote in my book, about laying on roof top in chinatown1968, armed with a powerful snippers rifle, silently aimed at well known cops reacting to and some exscetbating racial tention in Alexandra Park Housing . Your advocation of cops engaging more with the commumity at large is really needed and works . In Alexandra Park housing complex, cops have walked around shook hands, held babies making it harder for crime-recruiters like I was,to convince young teen thst cops were our natural enemies; however you cant have it both ways… cops with tanks surrounding a car of teenagers guns drawn, in reaction to more cops getting Killed as happened in Ontsrio last week, only to release them moments later, calling it a routine traffic stop, then approach the same teens later that day hand out offering conversation and wordly perspectives, guns pressed against my head, car searched, then let go didnt endear me to police concerns or politics;, i was then aftet all, the leader of canadas biggest bank robbery gang, and so, was able to rationalize extreme police tactics to ensure public safety as for the most part my own doing. Guns guns guns, my area if expertise. I smuggled guns into the states for protection and smuggled american guns into canada, never getting caught, I could at sixteen make a gun and or a bombs, taught to me by a black CIA agent, Warren Hart,. its now easier to aquire illegal guns butharder to get the precurser chemicals for bomb manufacturing, a good thing. You mentioned left and right wing groups as a growing threat, anarchist movements, putting LSD in police Hq in chicago in 1968 was a dangerous joke to elevate police consciousness, even revolutinaries knew cops had a needed function in society, todays talk, as witnessed by the attack on domocracy in the USA with video tape capturing former police officers (right wing) to kill all police traitors at the capital building, should be a wake up call to the real danger facing police today. Young black and aboriginal teens shooting each other and occassionly a cop, can be mitigated by letting more people out of jail into cheaper more effective community residential facilities (ive been in several across canada); doing so, would create the space and government funds to treat those who are the most dangerous
    by not releading them out too soon, due to overvrowding and wardens complaints, about how dangerous their prisons are becomming. Wardens hate big city police sweeps that fill up their jails, cops hate wardens (court system) for letting them back out so soon. 98% of everyone arrested will be released someday and thats just the facts, in that 98% some will fall through the cracks and pose a greater danger to society and that Calvin is what were talking about now; we and others, should keep talking about this subject, until those judicial cracks are understood by all and corrected to everyones satisfaction.

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