A court case related to the Ottawa police’s investigation into a child’s wagon carrying jerry cans to help fuel Freedom Convoy protestors last year has resulted in the accused, Allen Remley, being acquitted of all charges of mischief and obstruction of police.
Lawyer Jim Karahalios did not have to call any evidence to the case before Ontario Court Justice Perkins-McVey ruled that Crown prosecutors failed to justify their charges against Remley.
In her ruling, it was observed by the judge that the investigating officer had taken insufficient notes, and that the accused was not granted his lawful right to seek legal representation.
Police described how Remley used a wagon to provide a “mobile gas station” despite restrictions on the Freedom Convoy demonstrations that took up much of Ottawa’s downtown core last February.
During court proceedings, Const. Jonathan Kenney claimed to have spotted jerry cans on a child’s wagon located in the vicinity of Remley’s truck but was uncertain of their exact location. Then he said that the red wagon was situated approximately ten feet away from his car.
According to Kenney, a hostile crowd of protesters prevented him from being able to investigate further and he also stated that he did not see Remley actually fill up a car with fuel.
“The investigation was not worth it,” said Kenney.
When he was asked whether he had asked for Remley’s license, he said he wasn’t sure if he had the authority to do so.
“Hmmm, now I’m not sure I had authority. … At the time, I thought I had authority under the Highway Traffic Act, but now I think I didn’t. I asked for the identification to continue my investigation. It was an error on my part,” said Kenney.
According to Kenney, he asked Remley to leave but did not give him the right to counsel, admitting his notes from the time were “not great.”
“Based on the evidence before me, the best we have is jerry cans in a wagon 10 feet away with dozens of people milling about,” said Justice Perkins-McVey.