Founded in 1983 - United for Diversity and Racial Equality


Montréal, November 1, 2012 --- As a result of additional information concerning Montreal Police Officer Stéphanie Trudeau (“Officer # 728”), a victim of the officer’s actions has decided to reject mediation and request the Quebec human rights commission to investigate the case.

Mr. Julian Menezes, lecturer at McGill University, was violently arrested last May by Officer Trudeau and her partner in the Plateau Mont-Royal district when he volunteered to be a witness for a cyclist they were ticketing. He was handcuffed and given a “Starlight Tour”, whereby he was transported to a district far from the arrest and released in the North of the island at 3:30 am, without the means to get home. While in the police vehicle, he was subjected to racial and homophobic slurs, (including being called a “f-cking Indian”) and acts of physical violence (the officers deliberately stopped the car abruptly several times, causing his face to slam against the glass dividing the front and back of the police car). In addition, he suffered a sprained ankle during the arrest, and received a fine of $146 from Officer Trudeau for “continuing to do an act”, an act the ticket fails to specify.

Mr. Menezes mandated CRARR to file both a civil rights violations complaint with the human rights commission, seeking $30,000 in damages and a ban of the “Starlight Tour”, and a complaint with the Police Ethics Commissioner.

At first, mediation to seek early settlement of the civil rights complaint was considered. However, after information of yet another violent intervention involving Officer #728 surfaced, in which excessive use of force and other questionable verbal exchanges were shown on video, both Mr. Menezes and CRARR decided to reject mediation.

“Given the number of complaints against Officer #728, I believe that it is in the public interest for the human rights commission to investigate this case,” said Mr. Menezes. “This complaint exposes a clear pattern of individual and organizational practices - such as the “Starlight Tour” - that require the close scrutiny of an external body.”

“Mediation in cases of police discrimination systematically leads to total confidentiality and non-admission of liability and this has produced the effect of erasing from the public record all complaints of racial profiling and other forms of biased policing”, added CRARR’s Executive Director, Fo Niemi. “Furthermore, mediation requires the victim or complainant to drop all other recourses, which also include police ethics complaints, something which is not in the public interest in this case.”