Last Updated: November 17, 2010 6:25pm
A woman who was violently brutalized by police wants heads to roll.
“Should they keep their jobs? Probably not,” said Stacy Bonds, 27, who was traumatized when she was unlawfully arrested and her Charter rights violated by Ottawa police in 2008.
An internal police investigation is ongoing after a judge threw out public intoxication and assault charges against Bonds, ruling Ottawa cops violently attacked Bonds, illegally strip searched her, cut her shirt and bra off, and left her in a cold cell for three hours half naked after she soiled herself.
And just four days before Bonds’ arrest Sgt. Steven Desjourdy, one of the officers involved, used excessive force on an aggressive woman who he kicked and shocked with a Taser while in custody.
Desjourdy later pleaded guilty to a Police Services Act charge in that Sept. 2, 2008 incident and was demoted to first-class constable for 90 days.
“How do you cover up your tracks on that one? You know, you did it to one person, you did it to another,” Bonds said, adding Desjourdy’s punishment in that case is laughable.
“That makes me feel like why is this guy a sergeant?”
At the very least, she said, the officers involved should be suspended without pay for a “serious” length of time and be required to undergo extensive sensitivity training.
Desjourdy and the other officers involved in Bonds’ arrest were not reachable by telephone Wednesday.
“You can’t just do this to people,” Bonds said. “I haven’t been the same in these last couple of years, especially in the last few months coming up to trial. Now still, trying to find the words is not easy.”
Community leader and director of the Canadian Tribute to Human Rights, Oni Joseph, said the actions of police are insidious, calling Bonds’ arrest racial profiling.
“They need to get fired,” she said, adding the police need better training.
Bonds denies police allegations that she was stopped because she was drinking a beer as she walked home at about 5:30 a.m. after a night out.
But she stopped short of calling it racial profiling.
“I feel it was more sexism,” she said.
“I don’t want this to go forgotten, sweep it under the rug, hush-hush, continue and go about our business, which is why I was so pleased that the judge was so outspoken towards them.”