Crown stays second-degree murder charge against Delta police constable Jordan MacWilliams

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      Const. Jordan MacWilliams has been spared the possibility of spending many years in jail.

      That's because today, the criminal justice branch announced that it has entered a stay of proceedings against the Delta police officer.

      He had previously been charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of Mehrdad Bayrami outside New Westminster's Starlight Casino on November 8, 2012.

      At the time, MacWilliams was part of a municipal integrated emergency response team that had responded to a call of a man firing shots at a female casino employee. Bayrami also reportedly dragged her while holding a gun to her head.

      The charge against MacWilliams was approved in October 2014, infuriating many current and former law-enforcement officers. One of them, former policeman Leo Knight, wrote four blog posts explaining why he felt that the criminal proceeding against MacWilliams was "outrageous".

      Today, the criminal justice branch stated that since MacWilliams had been charged, the Crown has interviewed more than 35 witnesses. They included several officers on scene when Bayrami was shot dead.

      Following a review, the Crown determined that "available evidence no longer satisfies the charge approval standard for a prosecution of Cst. MacWilliams for second degree murder, or for any other criminal offence".

      "CJB recognizes that this case has attracted considerable public attention since the charge of second degree murder was approved in October 2014," the statement declared. "CJB also appreciates the importance of transparency in maintaining public confidence in the administration of justice, especially in relation to the use of lethal force by police officers. As noted by the Supreme Court of Canada: 'No one is above the law. When a member of the community is killed or seriously injured by a police officer, it is not only appropriate to ask whether the police were acting lawfully, it is essential.' "

      Comments

      3 Comments

      need a new police force

      Jul 14, 2015 at 3:16pm

      no one believed he would be found guilty

      Arachides

      Jul 14, 2015 at 7:54pm

      We have yet to hear whether or not the officer charged had an itchy trigger finger or possible miscommunication top down. From the video I've seen the only threat Mr. Bayrami posed outside the casino after the roads were closed was to himself. On top of that is 'shoot to kill' SOP?
      One thing that's always troubling to me is that during virtually any police involved incident is just how extensive any associated police force/EMS uses cell phones to avoid open conversations being monitored or recorded. Of course some would require that level of security butday to day most would be the sort of interactions that the Public should be aware of and able to pass judgement on. Going from second degree murder, charges laid after the facts/investigation were analyzed, to their staying is quite a switch, will anyone from the Crown be held accountable?
      In the end we have a dead Citizen that needed help and a combined police force that killed without consequences.
      Do you feel safer?

      About time

      Jul 15, 2015 at 11:15am

      Glad the CJB finally came to their sense and realized that absolute sham of an investigation this was by the IIO. Sadly we won't likely know what lead them to recommend a charge of second degree murder in the first place. I look forward to the daughter's lawsuit being thrown out as well.