Today, Justice Deluca sentenced Constable Michael Theriault to serve nine months in jail and 12 months’ probation for beating Dafonte Miller while off duty in 2016.
The Toronto Police Service also released a statement on the steps it will be taking will in relation to the case. Constable Theriault will be suspended without pay by Chief of Police James Ramer. The Toronto Police Professional Standards unit will resume its investigation in to the events of the evening of December 28, 2016. And the Waterloo Regional Police Service will complete the Section 11 report under the Police Services Act. The Toronto Police Service had requested this external review to ensure an independent investigation, officials said.
“Today’s outcome does not change the life-altering injuries sustained by Mr. Dafonte Miller,” said Chief Ramer. “This case has created a further divide between the police and the Black community, especially those who have lived experiences of discrimination in the justice system or by police. We will continue to take the steps necessary to rebuild trust with our communities and to ensure accountability and transparency.”
Since this incident, the Toronto Police Service has changed the process to ensure the SIU is notified in all cases where a police officer has been involved in an incident that results in serious injury, whether the incident occurred on or off duty, the statement noted.
In the days ahead, the Toronto Police Service will continue to respect the right of people to voice concerns, share experiences, and come together in a peaceful and lawful way, officials added.