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La trial defense Lich-Barber wants emails from police

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Tamara Lich enters the Ottawa courthouse. (Archive photo)

The Canadian Press

Lawyers for two organizers of the trucker convoy resumed their argument Friday in a legal battle over the ;access to internal documents of the Ottawa Police Service.

The defense disputes the police theory that some of these documents are protected by attorney-client privilege.

Tamara Lich and Chris Barber is on trial for their role in the protest against COVID-19 health measures that paralyzed the streets of Ottawa for three weeks in the winter of 2022.

They face numerous charges, including mischief, counseling others to commit wrongdoing and intimidation. The Crown seeks to prove that these two leading organizers had influence on the actions of the demonstrators.

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The downtown blockade lasted from January 29 to February 20, 2022. (File photo)

The trial was frequently delayed due to issues with the admissibility of evidence.

Defense lawyers want emails that show what evidence police officers were asked to turn over in connection with this case, as well as any instructions given to officers about updating the software on their cellphones at the end of the investigation. protest.

This software update may have deleted messages between Mr. Barber and the police liaison Nicole Bach, who was considered one of the main contacts of the organizer of the convoy.

In response to its request, the defense received only heavily redacted emails. The Crown and Ottawa police maintain that this redaction excluded information that was irrelevant to the case or protected by attorney-client privilege.

The Crown, defense lawyers and those from the Ottawa police presented their legal arguments on the documents to the judge all day Thursday and early Friday.

Friday afternoon, the hearing of witnesses in this trial resumed with, on the stand, Sergeant Jordan Blonde, a police officer described as a secondary contact of Mr. Barber. Mr. Blonde described hostile scenes that led to the police operation to forcibly remove protesters from downtown Ottawa.

He told the court that police tried to hand out notices to protesters to leave the city center peacefully on February 16 and 17, 2022. One person then took the flyer and threw it into the street. the toilets in the middle of Wellington Street, which runs along Parliament Hill.

Sergeant Blonde also stated that on February 17, approximately three weeks after the start of the demonstration, he witnessed a scene in which demonstrators behaved in a hostile manner. He indicated that the police had withdrawn from an area located a few steps from Parliament Hill.

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Downtown Ottawa was paralyzed for several weeks in the winter of 2022 by the convoy of truckers and their supporters. (File photo)

Police began the takedown the next day, February 18, when the federal government used the Emergency Measures Act. Sergeant Blonde said Friday that he spoke to several people among the protesters who were very insistent on being arrested.

He also described an outpost of convoy participants gathered in a parking lot near a stadium in the eastern part of the federal capital, home of the Ottawa Titans baseball team. He said he saw saunas, tents, ropes of wood, stacks of propane tanks and about sixty vehicles.

People lived in this parking lot. It was quite a strange sight, Sergeant Blonde said.

Lawyers for the co-defendants later told the court that they did not will not want to cross-examine Mr. Blonde until Judge Heather Perkins-McVey has ruled on the police documents requested by the defense.

The trial is expected to resume on Tuesday with the continuation of the Crown's interrogation of Sergeant Blonde.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116