Emergencies Act inquiry hearing from more police officers

Emergencies Act inquiry hearing from more police officers

The Public Order Emergency Commission resumes public hearings today, with senior police members expected to testify.

Two Ottawa police officers and an Ontario Provincial Police member are slated to testify at the inquiry investigating the federal government’s unprecedented use of the Emergencies Act.

Interim Ottawa police chief Steve Bell said on Monday that in the days leading up to the mass protest in the city last winter, police didn’t have intelligence suggesting the “Freedom Convoy” would use local citizens as a “leverage point.”

Senior police and City of Ottawa officials have painted a picture of disorganization between police forces and levels of government in the response to the mass demonstrations.

Last week, Ottawa’s police services board announced they had selected a new chief of police who will start Nov. 17, despite the municipal election Monday.

The inquiry’s ultimate goal is to examine the federal government’s decision to invoke the Emergencies Act three weeks into the crisis, and report on whether the unprecedented move was warranted.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 25, 2022.