ONTARIO – An Ontario Provincial Parliament member said the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) tasered his son in the back after he defended a man medically exempt from wearing a mask.
“The crime, my sons friend went to the bar to order a beer wasn’t wearing a mask. the owner of the Arrow pub called the cops,” tweeted Kingston-area MPP Randy Hillier. “My sons stood up & explained their friend is exempt from mask wearing, they’re both in jail.”
@OPP_ER tasered my son in the back tonight in Perth. The crime, my sons friend went to the bar to order a beer wasn’t wearing a mask. the owner of the Arrow pub called the cops. My sons stood up & explained their friend is exempt from mask wearing, they’re both in jail #onpoli— Randy Hillier (@randyhillier) December 5, 2020
Hillier sent a letter to the Commissioner of the Ontario Police expressing his concerns with what he called police officers “becoming increasingly belligerent and aggressive towards perceived violations of facial covering policies.”
Hillier said in the latest incident an individual was physically escorted out of a pub in downtown Perth for failure to wear a mask while drinking with his two sons.
“Once outside, my two sons attempted to diffuse the outrage of the individual removed from the premises, as he was in a highly agitated state,” said Hillier.
“As they attempted to de-escalate the situation, my eldest son Dillon, a Canadian Forces veteran was thrown to the sidewalk by the police, at which time my youngest son, Clayton stepped into the unoccupied space between the police and Dillon, to act as a shield to prevent further physical violence against Dillon by the police.
“Clayton was then tasered in the back and immediately fell to the ground. Both of my sons were then handcuffed and detained overnight in the Perth OPP jail. “
Hillier said Dillon was issued a POA for intoxication, and Clayton, who was tasered, wasn’t charged with any violations. The individual who was escorted from the premises was driven home by the OPP and was not charged with any offenses.”
The Ontario politician is now calling for a comprehensive training and information regime to ensure OPP officers are fully informed of facial covering orders – including the broad exemptions contained with the orders.
He also wants the OPP to immediately stop patrolling retail stores for perceived facial covering violations, along with ending what he calls the coercive and false threats of exorbitant penalties.
Hillier says there needs to be a review of the conduct of the officers involved in the incident with his sons on Dec. 4 at the Golden Arrow Pub in Perth, Ont.
He also wants assurance that police enforcement is not influenced by political opposition to unconstitutional COVID-19 orders against otherwise peaceful, law-abiding citizens.
In a news release, the OPP described the incident as a “disturbance” in downtown Perth, Ont., on Foster Street.
They said police were called to a bar shortly before 10:30 p.m. and the owner asked officers to remove several people over a mask dispute.
“While one individual left voluntarily, others were escorted from the location,” said the Ontario police.