Canada Ministers say Canada must 'do better' after Boushie verdict

09:07  11 february  2018
09:07  11 february  2018 Source:   CBC

'Bring drums': Boushie support rallies planned in Saskatoon, Regina after Stanley not-guilty verdict

  'Bring drums': Boushie support rallies planned in Saskatoon, Regina after Stanley not-guilty verdict 'Bring drums': Boushie support rallies planned in Saskatoon, Regina after Stanley not-guilty verdict People are gathering in Saskatoon, Regina and other Canadian cities Saturday to show their support for the family of Colten Boushie after Gerald Stanley, a Saskatchewan farmer, was acquitted Friday of responsibility for Boushie's death. "There is no justice!" yelled people in the courtroom after the jury foreman read out the verdict Friday night. Moments earlier, the presiding judge had urged calm despite the "raw emotions" felt by those in the room.

Cameron said Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould has promised to meet with the Boushie family in the near future. As a country we can and must do better - I am committed to working Something has to be done about this!" said Alvin Baptiste, Boushie 's uncle, after the verdict was read aloud.

00:00 Toews’s message to Team Canada : Everybody do your part. 00:00 'I was in shock': Chief says FSIN will be asking for new trial, feds to intervene after Stanley verdict . Gerald Stanley testifies in his own defence after lawyer says Colten Boushie was killed in ‘freak accident’.

Ministers say Canada must 'do better' after Boushie verdict© Provided by CBC Ministers say Canada must 'do better' after Boushie verdict

Federal ministers say the country must do better for Indigenous peoples in the Canadian justice system after a Saskatchewan jury found Gerald Stanley not guilty of killing Colten Boushie.

Justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould and Indigenous services minister Jane Philpott both posted on Twitter they want more to be done.

Justin Trudeau echoed those statements, offering his condolences to Boushie's family.

"I'm not going to comment on the process that led to this point today, but I am going to say we have come to this point as a country far too many times," he told reporters Saturday morning.

Prime Minister says he feels the pain of Boushie's family after not guilty verdict in Stanley trial

  Prime Minister says he feels the pain of Boushie's family after not guilty verdict in Stanley trial Prime Minister says he feels the pain of Boushie's family after not guilty verdict in Stanley trialThe not guilty verdict in Gerald Stanley’s trial brought a range of reactions from across the country during the weekend.

Your verdict must be based on the facts," said Popescul. Boushie 's uncle, Alvin Baptiste, told reporters that it's now just a waiting game. "I'm hoping the jury will do the right thing. Canada missing in action on police in peacekeeping despite Liberal promises.

I had a good chat with (provincial) Minister Don Morgan on the outcome, that we do push for — and hope for — peace after the verdict comes down.” That’s exactly what happened,” Spencer said . Burge told the jury that if they are not convinced Stanley had an intention to kill Boushie , they must

"I know Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians alike know that we have to do better."

But some question the ministers speaking publicly on a judicial decision.

"Inappropriate" was the word former justice minister Peter MacKay used to describe the posts.

"It undermines the system of justice, quite frankly, to have politicians weigh in," he said, adding the case could still be appealed, so they are technically commenting on a case currently before the courts.

Unwarranted skepticism of a properly conducted trial will set a dangerous precedent, MacKay concluded.

Federal Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer called Boushie's death "tragic," but said the independent judicial process must run its course without political intervention.

Trudeau promises justice system reform

  Trudeau promises justice system reform OTTAWA - Justin Trudeau says much needs to be done to fix the way First Nations people are treated within Canada's criminal justice system. But the prime minister says it would be "completely inappropriate" to comment on the specifics of last week's acquittal of a Saskatchewan farmer in the killing of 22-year-old Colten Boushie. Speaking in the House of Commons, Trudeau says First Nations people are underrepresented on juries and overrepresented in the prison population — a situation he says his government is committed to solving.

Gerald Stanley testifies in his own defence after lawyer says Colten Boushie was killed in ‘freak accident’. The prime minister tweeted that he Cameron didn’t say what the changes might be but had earlier indicated an immediate appeal of the verdict and a public inquiry into the justice process

Alvin Baptiste, Boushie ’s uncle, said the verdict was not right. 9, 2018, after a jury delivered a verdict of not guilty of killing 22-year-old Indigenous man Colten Boushie . “It would have been way better to testify to self-defence than what actually happened, but he couldn’t,” Spencer told the jury.

"It's appropriate to show concern and support... for the family of the victim, but I think it is important that we remember that politicians don't decide these types of things," Scheer told reporters in Halifax.

He also said that the situation warranted a discussion about challenges faced by young First Nations people.

'Very rare' politicians speak up

This outreach from federal politicians is virtually unprecedented, according to Glen Luther, a criminal law expert from the University of Saskatchewan.

"It's very rare," he said Saturday. "The federal government is actually taking it seriously."

Ministers using a specific trial to point to issues in the justice system could provide a much-needed wake-up call, he added.

"It does fall on the federal government to fix that, they're in charge of the justice system, they're the ones that can make the reforms."

Perry Bellegarde, the national chief of the Assembly of First Nations, is anxiously waiting to hear what the government is planning to do.

Trudeau promises justice system reform

  Trudeau promises justice system reform Trudeau promises justice system reformBut the prime minister says it would be "completely inappropriate" to comment on the specifics of last week's acquittal of a Saskatchewan farmer in the killing of 22-year-old Colten Boushie.

Those tensions were on full display as Stanley walked free after the verdict . Outside court, Boushie 's uncle Alvin Baptiste said there was no justice for his nephew. If Canada -US trade is a bad idea, there are no good ideas: Trudeau. Feb 9, 2018 11:23 PM.

Those tensions were on full display as Stanley walked free after the verdict . Outside court, Boushie 's uncle Alvin Baptiste said there was no justice for his nephew. If Canada -US trade is a bad idea, there are no good ideas: Trudeau. Feb 10, 2018 12:23 AM.

"Those are positive statements from very high levels," he said. "They get it, but now we have to see the proof in the pudding … sooner [rather] than later."

But the shifting tones also caused blowback on social media against Wilson-Raybould, as people interpreted her comments as questioning the proceedings.

"Are the Liberals suggesting that our courts return verdicts that they approve of?" one response said.

"Respectfully, the AG and prime minister should not be commenting on cases, especially such a divisive one," said another.

However, Luther said it's more likely the tweets were directed at the system in general, and not meant to criticize the judge or jurors.

Indigenous leaders push for change

Indigenous leaders are pushing for change as well, calling on the federal government to step in when the verdict was handed down Friday evening.

Boushie, 22, and four others from the Red Pheasant Cree Nation drove onto Stanley's property on Aug. 9, 2016. After an altercation with Stanley, his son and wife, Boushie was shot in the head.

Prospective Indigenous jurors were rejected by the defence team, according to courtroom observers.

Clarification : A previous version of this article stated the ministers were calling for a review of the justice system. The story has been updated to reflect that the tweets suggested doing better for Indigenous Canadians.(Feb 10, 2018 4:49 PM)

RCMP reeling after messages from a private Facebook group leaked .
Public Safety minister Ralph Goodale has announced an investigation into “appalling” messages from an alleged RCMP officer that were leaked from a private Facebook group. The messages, first reported by APTN, showed support for the Gerald Stanley acquittal, with one message going as far to say “the kid got what he deserved.”Goodale said the remarks were “appalling, and unacceptable,” adding that “it just contradicts everything the RCMP stands for. It’s under very, very, serious investigation.”The comments come on the heels of the one of the most racially-charged legal cases in recent Saskatchewan history.

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