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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - October 8, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta Gastown inquiry raps police action VICTORIA (CD The Van- couver police department used "inappropriate" and "unneces- sary, unwarranted and exces- sive force" in breaking up the Aug. 7 disturbance in the Gas- town area of Vancouver, an in- quiry into the incident has found. Mr. Justice Thomas A. Dohm of the British Columbia Su- preme Court, v.-ho chaired the inquiry, said in a report re- leased Thursday lie found "on the basis of credible witnesses that in some instances the po- lice officers over-reacted." "The officers responsible for inflicting such harm are in my respectful judgment not suitable for this type of duty." His report, following the in- quu'y which occupied 10 days of testimony from 48 witnesses, recommends that the Vancou- ver police, department train spe- cial riot-conlrol police to handle civil disturbances propcny. Judge Dohm's J7-page report was released by Attorney-Gen- eral Leslie Pelerson who or- dered the inquiry following com- plaints of police brutality wliile quelling the demonstration held to protest a police crackdown on drug abuse in Gastown, a refur- bished section of Vancouver's waterfront business district. The report also criticizes the behavior of two reporters for The mounted policemen were followed by officers in riot gear carrying riot sticks. At this point, said the report, "pande- monium broke loose." A total of 11 civilians and six police officers received injuries Mr. Justice Dohm sairl a small group of people tried to agitate the crowd against the police but failed to do so. No steps were taken to remove these people. MOST BEHAVED WELL Most police behaved well, he said, despite the great amounl of abuse and insults they re- ceived. In his general remarks, Mr. Justice Dohm observed that the crowd was unorganized, there were few agitators, some police officers were insufficiently briefed, police had only a vague dispersal plan and the presence of news photographers did not have the alleged effect of inter- fering with police. His report makes 10 recom- mendations to prevent similar occurrences: Vancouver Board of Po- lice Commissioners should no longer allow demonstrators to take over public streets; commissioners should instruct the police department to prepare squads of men for riot control; -The use of mounted police the underground newspaper; officers should be discontinued Georgia Straight, Kenneth Les- as a crowd-control tactic, and should be used only as a last re- sort: horses are used they should be kept off sidewalks and not enter restaurants and public buildings: policemen should not be used in crowd control work and officers in riot tor and Eric Sommer. Judge Dohm said they prom- oted the gathering "to protest the law against the use of mari- juana and to protest the concen- trated drug crackdown activi- ties of the police in the gastown area. CALLS THEM DANGEROUS "In my opinion Messrs. Les- ter and Sommer who testified in this inquiry are tuo intelligent and dangerous radical young men. Their true motivation is gear should wear numbered hel- mets for identification; should use cameras and sound equipment to docu- ment police behavior in order to their desire to challenge author- counter-act any false charges of ity in every way possible." j police brutality as well as prov- However, the report noted that the Vancouver police de- cided before the Gastown iding a record of police behav- ior; should use better am- "smoke in" not to arrest anyone j ph'fying equipment for commu- for smoking marijuana that evening. The report also said that an alleged window-break- ing incident, which prompted the initial police charge on the crowd of did not occur. Mr. Dohm said there was ver- bal baiting of police, but the crowd was not a mob. "The greater weight of evi- dence is that the majority of the crowd was not an unpleasant crowd at the time that the po- lice decided to move he said. The report said the arrival of mounted policemen caused panic, terror and resentment. Violence erupted only after po- lice intervened and four mounted officers went about clearing the streets with riding crops. nications with crowds; recordings should be taken of police warnings; should not be used in attempts to scare citi- zens off the streets; commissioners should consider making a team of im- partial civilian observers avail- able at the scene of serious dis- turbances, threatened or actual. Mr. Petersoii said Mr. Justice Dohm had done an excellent job and brought foward sound rec- ommendations. He also said he will discuss this report with B.C. police chiefs. ON STRIKE Doug Croiik, business for electrical worki'rs employed by liritish Columbia Hydro and Power. Authority, said the Inter- national Brotherhood of Elec- trical Workers union mem- bers who slrnek (he nrnvin- cially owned utility will not rctuni to work without a sign- ed wage agree in e n t. Tlie union wants an 18.5 per cent increase ill a two-year con- tract on a liase of hour ly. Their contract expired March 31. Heart pump recipient checked DETROIT (AP) Haskell Shanks, the world's longest-liv- ing recipient of a mechanical heart pump, is back in hospital with what doctor's described as a "minor pulmonary problem." Shanks was admitted to Sinai Hospital here Sunday, Dr. Adrian Kantrowitz, who im- planted the pump Aug. 11, re- vealed Wednesday. Shanks will be in the hospital "for a few the doctor said. The problem isn't with the pump, he said, but. Kantrowitz wouldn't say exactly what the problem was. Shanks, 63, a plant guard for Uniroyal Inc., was the third man in history to have a me- chanical heart pump perma- nently installed. The battery-powered pump, which lakes over half the work of Shank's heart, has allowed his diseased heart to heal some- what, the doctor said. Shanks has congestive heart failure, a progressive disease that weak- ens (he heart muscles. Friday, October 8, 1971 THE IETHBRIDGE HERAtD 9 VOTE u DIMNIK Inserted by DIninik For Alderman Child kills sitter HORSMONDEN, England (AP) A teen-aged babysitter was killed Wednesday when an eight-year-old she was minding fired a shotgun daring a game of cowboys arid Indians. Chris- tine Phipps, 18. "died as a re- sult of an police added. ARE COMPANY MOVES BREAKING UP FAMILY LIFE? Every year, thousands of Canadian families move from ono com- munity to onotlicr because of company transfers. Usually it menus n promoljon, tliit transfers con also moon uprooted lives, marital sirens, educational problems ond other diffi- culties Is is worlli il? And how can families learn to copo wilh increase! mobilily? Susan Carson looks at the prob- lems of trariifoii, IN YOUR tETHBRIDGE HERALD WEEKEND MAGAZINE Saturday MERCHANDISE ON SALE SATURDAY 9 A.M. TILL 6 P.M. TILL 9 P.M. LIMITED QUANTITIES. REMINGTON 12 GAUGE SINGLE SHOT PRETTY POLLY LADIES' 15 INCH KEGH PILE LiNED MEN'S DOUBLE KNIT FORTREL OPEN A ZEUER'S BUDGET ACCOUNT Reg. 36.95 EACH MEN'S SLEEVELESS CARDIGAN and PULLOVER VESTS YOUTHS' GREENGUARD OPEN THURSDAY and FRiDAY TJL9P.M. Rep. 4.96 2S EACH UIV Use Zeller's Budget Coupons Bj Use Teller's Budget Couponi MEN'S LONG StEEVE SPORT SHIRT WOMEN'S TURTLE NECK ROAD RACE plug in sizzler cars lane counter brake and essei a economy siza 20 fl. oz. dispenser EACH im EACH Use Zeller's Budget Coupons ESS Use Zeiler's Budget Coupons OPEN 9 TO 6 DAILY INFANTS' 3 IN 1 TEENS' NAILHEAD 40-PIECE POWER DRILL KIT Includes: Drill bits Sanding discs Wire brushes Polishing bonnets Paint mixer -Sizes 2 to 4 to snowsuit and bunting bag -Machine washable Gifj Reg. 18.99 "EACH Use Zeller's Budget Coupons H Use Zeller's Budge! Coupons OPEN THURSDAY and FRIDAY 'TIL 9 P.M. BOYS' SWEATER Use Zeller's Budget Coupons Use ZeMer's Budget Coupons WOMEN'S Sid JACKETS USE YOUR ZELLER'S BUDGET ACCOUNT STOOLS ed colours ir constructor Reg. 5.96 PACK 80 -Sizes S.M.L. 100% nylon CUR Reg. 13.86 'EACH EACH 9ml Use Zellcr's Budget Coupons HI Use Zcllcr's Budget Couponi Satisfaction Guaranteed! Located in the South lothbridgo Shopping Centre on Mayor Mnginth Drive. Open Daily 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday and Friday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Telephone 328-8171 ;