An 8-year-old boy was traumatized this week when he watched a police officer allegedly brutally attack his mother.
Officers arrived at Lana Sinclair’s Winnipeg home on Halloween after they received reports of shouting. Sinclair said she was telling her son to hurry up so they could go out trick-or-treating.
One officer checked on her son, while another talked to Sinclair in the kitchen. The officer allegedly poked Sinclair and, when she protested, he pulled out his baton. "He hit me here," Sinclair said, showing her forearms, which she said she held up to defend herself. "And he hit me here and then I fell on the floor," she said, pointing to her knees.
Sinclair’s 8-year-old son saw what happened next. “[The police officer] had my arm behind me and he smashed my face right here," Sinclair said, pointing to the sewing table in her living room. Allegedly, she was then handcuffed, stood up up and the police kicked out her feet from underneath her. She fell on her face.
Sinclair injuries were so severe, an ambulance was called. She was taken to Victoria Hospital and then the police took her to a local station. She said the sergeant on duty was angry at his officers, but so far they haven’t commented on the case.
In the end, it was Sinclair who wound up in trouble. She’s facing charges related to assaulting an officer and resisting arrest. Sinclair worries that this could happen to someone else and has filed a complaint with the Law Enforcement Review Agency (LERA). She has also hired a lawyer.
LERA Commissioner Max Churley told CTV that only six of the hundreds of cases filed last year qualified for a hearing. Most cases lacked sufficient evidence or they were referred for criminal prosecution.
Sinclair is concerned about her son’s perception of violence after the incident. “We [my son and I] were both traumatized,” she said. “I just hug him and kiss him and tell him it’s okay. All I was thinking of was his safety, and how he was going to be traumatized and how he is going to see the police now.”
Image via CBC