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Mistreated Citizen Alert: Sandra Brown Turner
17/12/2002
From today's Globe and Mail. The charges against her have finally been dropped.
Ms. Turner in effect was exiled from doing security work at Pearson Airport after the incident, in the week after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Amid the heightened tension, Peel Regional Police Constable Luis Simoes crossed through her checkpoint. Although the officer wore a tactical uniform, she tried to check his identification, and a loud shouting match began over who had the authority to check the other person's identity. Police dragged Ms. Turner away in handcuffs and took her to a nearby station, where she was strip-searched and charged. If she had been convicted, Ms. Turner would have faced up to six months in jail. But Monday, during the first trial date that could be arranged, the criminal charge didn't stand up. In fact, no one even argued that it should. "There is no public interest in proceeding with this prosecution," Crown attorney N.J. Bridge told a judge. That remark began Ms. Turner's trial and ended it. The Crown offered no explanation why it took so long to reach that conclusion. Ms. Turner's lawyer, Clayton Ruby, said it was "disgraceful" that his client's life was in limbo during the long interval. "It took them 15 months to say that, when you and I knew that from Day 1," Mr. Ruby said in an interview outside court Monday.
Yes, we did know that from Day One. So, what happened? And what is it with strip searches in this country? Do the police just strip search anybody who pisses them off?
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