Quebec police watchdog slams the Montreal man’s partial police version of the incident after the death
The family of a Montreal man who died in a police operation received US$30,000 in compensation in a civil lawsuit against the Quebec police regulator.
In a ruling issued on Tuesday, Quebec court judge Louis Riverin found that the investigative agency was neither impartial nor transparent in communicating with the public on the case.
Koray Kevin Celik died in March 2017 at the age of 28, when his parents called 911 and said he was drunk and in crisis.
Four Montreal police officers answer the phone at their home in the suburb of ille-Bizard.
June and Cesur Celik said They watched Their son was kicked, suffocated and beaten with truncheons until his body stood still. Then his breathing stopped.
The prosecutor ruled, Will not bring charges against any officials After an investigation by the Quebec Independent Investigation Agency (BEI), a police monitoring agency, was involved.
They dragged our son’s name in the mud. They have caused great injustice not only to him, but also to our whole family.— Brave Steel
When a civilian is seriously injured or killed during a police operation, BEI will take over the case. The results of its investigation are submitted to the Quebec Public Prosecutor’s Office, which decides whether to bring charges.
The family argued in the lawsuit that before the prosecution made a decision, BEI published misleading news 18 months after Koray’s death, causing mental damage.
Lack of transparency
In the ruling, Riverin stated that BEI’s August 2018 statement lacked transparency and failed to maintain “public confidence”.
Riverin discovered that the statement did not provide a complete update of the BEI investigation results, but was written from the perspective of the police.
Riverin noted that the Celik family had expressed concern before the statement was made public because it did not include a version of the incident described by family witnesses.
The BEI statement stated that Celik had taken an “aggressive approach” to the police-the judge said this language was to defend the police.
Riverin wrote, “A reasonable person might think that this article is to prove that the police intervention is reasonable and a conclusion.”
“It should be remembered that BEI’s mission is not to defend the actions of the police, on the contrary. It is not a question whether this intervention is reasonable,” the judge wrote.
“Only release one version, that is, the version of the police involved. Don’t we risk publishing half-truths, distorting reality, and undermining public confidence?”
Riverin awarded $10,000 to Celik’s parents, and awarded $5,000 to his two brothers, Tyler and Deniz Celik.
‘Not above the law’
In an interview, Cesur expressed his gratitude for the court’s ruling. He said the decision shows that BEI is “not above the law” and that it favors the police.
He said that the statement issued by BEI in August 2018 actually blamed his son for his death.
“They dragged our son’s name into the quagmire. They caused great injustice not only to him, but to our whole family,” he said.
BEI declined to comment, saying it will study the decision. The Quebec Ministry of Public Security, which oversees BEI, did not respond to a request for comment.