Quebec City officers investigated for escorting suspect while holding extinguisher - Canadanewsmedia
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Quebec City officers investigated for escorting suspect while holding extinguisher



A 39-year-old man accused of setting his ex-partner on fire was escorted to a Quebec City jail by a police officer holding a fire extinguisher, prompting his superiors to investigate whether this was a “bad joke.”

The suspect, Frej Haj Messaoud, was charged over the weekend with attempted murder and aggravated assault. He made a brief court appearance Monday to schedule a follow-up appearance, which was set for Friday.

The victim, a mother of two, is in critical condition at a Quebec City hospital.  

Messaoud was transferred from a police station to detention centre on Sunday. Video footage of Messaoud leaving the station shows one officer holding a fire extinguisher.

A second officer, who is holding Messaoud’s elbow, appears to look down at the fire extinguisher and stifle a laugh.

As the video circulated online, some speculated the officers had engaged in a prank.

The officers’ union responded to the speculation Sunday evening, saying the fire extinguisher was a safety precaution.

Because journalists rarely show up for weekend prisoner transfers, the officers mistook journalists for members of the victim’s family. The officers feared “retaliation,” the union said.

But the Quebec City police department said Monday it will conduct an internal investigation into the behaviour of the two officers.

“Although the scene may suggest that it is a bad joke on the part of the police, it would be premature to draw any immediate conclusions without having taken the time to establish the facts and the circumstances surrounding this event,” the department said in a new release.

The department added that it takes the situation seriously and “the thoughts of the SPVQ are always toward the victim and their relatives.”

Victim’s children witnessed the attack

Messaoud, dressed in a light khaki pants and a black turtleneck, stayed quiet during the appearance Monday morning. His kept his eyes cast down toward the floor.

Crown prosecutor Sabrina Lambert-Michel asked the judge to ban Messaoud from trying to contact his ex-partner or anyone in her family. The accused nodded silently to confirm he would adhere to the condition.

No family members attended the court appearance. Messaoud did not enter a plea. He was represented by a legal aide lawyer.

The alleged attack took place Friday on Arago Street in Quebec City. Several neighbours saw the victim, a 27-year-old woman, on fire and screaming in the middle of the road.

She was left with severe burns to her face, hands and back, covering 50 per cent of her body. Her two children and mother, who witnesses say witnessed the incident, were treated for shock.

The victim’s father, who is in Tunisia, said he’s waiting to obtain a Canadian visa to join the family in Quebec City.

“I’m still angry about what happened,” he told Radio-Canada. “But I have confidence in the Canadian justice system.”

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Liberals block ethics commissioner from testifying about SNC-Lavalin report




The Liberal majority on the House ethics committee voted down an opposition motion to have Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion testify about his report which found that Justin Trudeau violated the Conflict of Interest Act over the SNC-Lavalin affair. Vassy Kapelos gets reaction from MPs on the committee. Plus, the Power Panel breaks down the Ford government’s changes to Ontario’s sex-education curriculum.

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Joshua Boyle worried about what his wife might tell police




Joshua Boyle

After calling 911 to report that his wife was missing and suicidal, Joshua Boyle told an Ottawa police sergeant that he was also worried what she might tell authorities when she was found.

“He told me he was concerned, as any husband would be, with what Caitlan (Coleman) would say to us when we found her,” Sgt. Shane Henderson told court Tuesday.

Henderson was one of the first officers to respond to Boyle’s 911 emergency call late on the night of Dec. 30, 2017. A recording of that call was played in court Tuesday.

The 911 call was made at 11:47 p.m. from a Centretown address.

Boyle told the dispatcher that his wife was threatening to kill herself. He said she was alone in her room then ran outside, and was “screaming at the top of her lungs that she was going to kill herself.”

He said she had borderline personality disorder, PTSD, “extreme mental instability” and other issues.

“I am very worried for her right now,” he said in the telephone recording, played in court.


Boyle told police his wife was wearing a hijab scarf on her head, but did not have a coat and may not have shoes.

Before she left the apartment, Boyle said they had an argument that “turned into rabid self-loathing, a panic attack, something, I’m not sure.”

“I had asked her to stay in her room,” he said.

“It shouldn’t be long,” the dispatcher told Boyle. “We’ll get some officers to see you there, OK?”

“OK,” Boyle replied. “Just try to be gentle with her: She is really going through a rough time.”

Sgt. Henderson was the first officer on scene, and went to Boyle’s apartment at 12:05 a.m.

Boyle repeated what he had told the dispatcher, and said his wife had initially raced up the stairs towards another apartment in the three-storey apartment block. Henderson testified: “He told me that he did not want to drag Caitlan back into the apartment or did not want to hit her.”

Henderson and another officer went to the second apartment and interviewed the young man who lived there. The tenant said he had heard someone banging on his back door 20 minutes earlier, but did not answer it.

Court heard that the officers searched the back staircase and yard but could not locate Coleman so they returned to Boyle’s apartment for more information.

According to Henderson, Boyle said Coleman was particularly stressed because her mother was in town, and she was worried about the state of their apartment. They had also argued, Boyle told Henderson, about drawing on walls and “Caitlan, as a wife, not performing her roles and responsibilities as a mother.”

Boyle told Henderson that he wanted Coleman to stay in her room and calm down. “He told me he kept the door open and at no time prevented her from leaving,” Henderson testified.

“He said he offered to have sex with Caitlan if she wanted to.”

When Henderson asked if Coleman had a cellphone, Boyle reached on top of the fridge and retrieved a flip phone.

Henderson asked what it was doing there. “Boyle said he took the phone away to make sure she did not break the phone as she had broken phones in the past,” Henderson testified.

Boyle is on trial on 19 charges, including assault, sexual assault and forcible confinement.

His wife Caitlan Coleman, with whom he was held hostage in Afghanistan, is the principal complainant in the case. She’s expected to testify Wednesday.

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Tanker crash kills one, injures nine near Cereal Alberta




Tanker crash

“One of the semi trucks was hauling fuel and that fuel ignited,” said RCMP Cpl. Laurel Scott. “So, that caused other vehicles in the collision to catch fire. A second semi was hauling butane and that’s caused a concern.”

A release from RCMP also confirmed the collision area is “consumed with flames.”

As a result of the second truck hauling butane, a preliminary evacuation order had been issued for the hamlet of Chinook.

By 9:00 pm, Alberta Emergency Alert officially rescinded the evacuation order for the community.

STARS Air Ambulance has flown one person to hospital in Calgary in serious, potentially life-threatening condition while HALO transported another individual in serious condition.

Brideaux also confirmed to Global News that six people have been treated at the scene and are likely to be released.

RCMP are also reaching out to anyone who was a part of or was witness to the domino crash, asking them to meet with officers in nearby Oyen.

“We’re asking those people to attend the Legion in Oyen,” said Scott. “Right now the Legion has been opened, food is available at the Legion, our Victims Services Unit members are at the Legion, and we have an RCMP member or members at the Legion. So, anybody who was a part of this collision, witness or needing some assistance in relation to the collision, is asked to go to the Legion.”

There is no word yet on the original cause of the fatal crash, as Scott added it will be several hours before a collision analyst is able to attend the scene.

“We will have a collision analyst attending,” she said. “But, I can tell you that collision analyst is not able and has not been able to look at the scene to do any examination or investigation.”

Traffic has since been rerouted from Highway 9 to Highway 884 eastbound and Highway 41 westbound.

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