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Jail Video of Disabled Man Finally Released by Police Who Denied It Existed for Years

A video that police in Toronto, Canada, swore did not exist for five years was released this week by the Toronto police department per the order of a Ontario Superior Court judge.

Udhbirprasaud ​(Joe) Bhikram was arrested on Jan. 28, 2009, for allegedly making death threats, but fought the charges, which were eventually thrown out.

Bhikram, who is disabled, claims that police assaulted him during his arrest and ignored him when he fell from his wheelchair.

Bhikram insists that he was urinated on by a police officer in a holding cell, which would have been recorded by a surveillance video (below).

Bhikram has filed numerous requests for years to get a copy of that video, but members of the Toronto police department swore on affidavits in 2012 that the video recording had been erased.

Bhikram filed an appeal with Toronto's Information and Privacy Commissioner to force Toronto Police to release the video.

But the privacy commissioner ruled on Jan. 7, 2013, that the jail surveillance video did not exist, reported The Star:

I arrive at the same conclusion that there is no reasonable basis to find that the police currently have holding cell video of Mr. Bhikram from Jan. 28, 2009.

However, when Bhikram filed a small claims lawsuit against a Toronto officer who allegedly urinated on him, a judge ordered the Toronto police to provide "the video in question" and it magically appeared.

"They told me the video was destroyed by another video overplaying this," Bhikram told CBC News. "What happened now? They got a video? Someone's lying."

However, the video is missing about six minutes.

"The video is still mutilated, tampered with," Bhikram told CBC News. "Without audio to show that I was screaming, moaning and begging for help. And the urination, positive that the cop flicked his penis at me, that's not included in the video."

"They have it and they will never show it, because what happened down there is going to be international if it's disclosed," added Bhikram. "That's my feeling. That's why I am crying. That's why I haven't got justice yet."

Toronto's Information and Privacy Commissioner issued a statement on Wednesday announcing it is now demanding to know why Toronto police claimed for years the video did not exist.

The police officer being sued still denies abusing Bhikram.

Sources: The Star and CBC News


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