Trial, Week 9: Summary - September 17


WEEK 9: SEPTEMBER 16 - 20, 1996

   * Day 39: Monday, September 16            * Day 42: Thursday, September 19
   * Day 40: Tuesday, September 17           * Day 43: Friday, September 20
   * Day 41: Wednesday, September 18


Edited by Roz Royce and Trond Halle, from notes by Trond Halle (Defendant)

Posted by FreeMedia


Abbreviations used in notes:

DC = Don Campbell (Defense)
SF = Shelagh Franklin (Defense)
GW = George Wool (Defense)
ST = Sheldon Tate (Defense)
MA = Manuel Azevedo (Defense)
HR = Harry Rankin (Defense)

LB = Lance Bernard (Crown)
JF = Jennifer Fawcus (Crown)

J = Judge

Cst. Kevin Mann (KM) back on witness stand.

J has a note from jury asking for clarification on what the boundaries are of the "no-go zone" and the "no-shoot zone" and whether or not they are the same. J asks KM.

HR notes that KM didn't know where the zone is, but believes he has an idea. HR would like a witness that knows. J instructs jury that this is what the witness understood to be the no-go zone.

KM has a hard time telling by looking at the small aerial photo. LB says other witnesses will be called that can clarify this, but understands that the no-shoot zone and no-go zone boundaries are the same.

ST - ST shows KM a map prepared by Insp. Kembel, but KM hasn't seen this before. ST would like to enter it as evidence, but J says it might be difficult if this witness hasn't seen map. ST will discuss it later with Crown.

KM says that he had a lot of communications with Command. Says they would have briefings with ERT Commanders before and after shifts. KM says that Wilby was designated Kamloops ERT leader because the leader wasn't available. Cpl. Wyton was Courtney ERT leader. Says there was a total of 12 ERT teams at Gustafsen Lake, but says they weren't all there at the same time. Agrees there was a system of organization to disseminate information. He clarifies that he had limited access to information of negotiations that were going on with the camp. Admits that he wasn't kept in the dark about what was going on though and agrees there were many transmissions going on over the air. Says he kept no notes, but says it would have been impossible to note all transmissions. Regarding his reference to people "brandishing" weapons, he says that he got his information from the "Eye in the Sky" (Wescam) and his forward observation team.

KM agrees that he was briefed on Sept. 9, 10, or 11 by Kembel or a designate of the no-shoot zone. He says he had seen no visual landmarks of the zone, but knew for certain that his team was not in the no-shoot zone when they were situated on the 1000 Road.

On Sept. 12, team started shift in afternoon to relieve Nelson team. Wasn't around when RCMP snipers shot at a "target of opportunity". Says that in his briefing they never discussed a "target of opportunity", though he did hear it mentioned on the radio. ST suggests that Kembel told him that anyone found in the no-go zone could be seen as a target of opportunity and that there was a "green light" to take them out. KM agrees. "Yes, if there was a threat." KM says that his team decided they wouldn't do that unless they were threatened. He clarifies that a green light means that the decision falls to the people on the ground whether to engage or not. They still have to answer for their actions.

KM agrees that when he works in drug enforcement and ERT team enters a building, they usually have a search warrant with them. Exception is when people are barricaded in a building or if they are armed.

Says the first time he was at Percy's lease was on Sept. 10. Courtney ERT was at the "Perch". Agrees that from intelligence, there was no information to suggest that there were people or arms there at Percy's residence. He understands the water hole was on the 1000 Road - not at Percy's residence.

Only saw a truck at the water hole on a video from Eye in the Sky, which he viewed after Sept. 11. Had heard on radio that truck had gone to water hole.

Says they had placed sensors around the water hole - Arseneault had set them up. He agrees that the information he has is not his own. Admits he can't tell jury that the water hole wasn't at Percy's residence. Agrees that the occupation on Percy's property (his lease) was without a search warrant. ST wonders if they could have flown over with FLIR to check for people. KM says that it wouldn't have been enough to satisfy that the area was secure to ensure the team's safety. KM maintains that they only went to Percy's residence to ensure that it was clear before moving forward. ST suggests that they camped on his property, but KM doesn't know where his property lines were. Admits he didn't go to residence with consent of Percy.

After truck was blown up, he says they never laid down more data sheets. ST suggests that the only reason they were there that day was to ambush and blow up truck. KM denies this. It was just part of the plan to move forward.

KM agrees that ERT uses radios to communicate with each other, though in rural situations, they sometimes don't. At Gustafsen Lake, his team always wore radios. On Sept. 11th, he wore the "Beast". Says you can wear radio on front or rear of Beast.

Hodgkin, Marsh and Brandt were in forward observation point. KM agrees that he never personally saw truck come out of camp. KM has never seen Eye in the Sky video to confirm whether or not people in the truck were carrying weapons.

Staff Sgt. Debolt and KM's jobs when truck blew up was to check passenger side of truck. Agrees that they were to move to truck as soon as the truck blew. They thought truck would be at one spot on the road, but says it ended up 10-15 feet further up the road from its momentum. Says he never saw people get out of vehicle. Later when he was with dog team, he tried to retrace the path of the two people through the bush. Armstrong, Arnold, Brooks and dogman from elsewhere were with KM. When they found black gloves on the track, he admits he had no information that occupants of truck wore gloves. He has nothing but his personal belief to connect gloves with occupants.

Following explosion, he heard Bison slam into red truck. "It did some damage, yes." He didn't see collision, but he heard it. He, Debolt, Cpl. Stiller were left by truck. Members from Nelson team were also around. Insp. Kembel was at Zulu - 16 km away from site. There was no intention to bring Kembel out to site. Agrees that he had no time to inspect contents of truck. In communications with Kembel, they decided to retreat up road because they didn't know who might come out of the camp and didn't want to get into any further engagements. They moved 5 km from explosion site past the "hanging tree". In discussing the hanging tree, KM realizes he doesn't know what the hanging tree refers to. Says that checkpoint at Percy's driveway was designed to stop traffic from camp from going south on 1000 Road. Says this wasn't maintained after their Sept. 11th retreat, but later on the 12th, they moved back to that checkpoint.

MB/ GW - KM agrees that he was given background of events when he first got there. GW relates Sept. 4th incident that Victoria ERT members were being stalked by members of the camp. KM agrees he heard that when they returned to work and believed this to be true. Agrees this is a serious situation. Then on the 7th, he was told that camp occupants "shot at" a police helicopter. KM agree that he believed this too and it concerned him. He hadn't heard that later that day Deputy Commissioner Farrell had rejected a long-range plan. Agrees that from Sept. 1 to 11, nothing happened other than the events described above. KM: "I don't think it's fair to narrow the time like that." Agrees though that during this time, things were quiet.

Before his team got there, he heard Clelland and Molendyk had been shot at and he agrees this is very serious. Admits that in the RCMP, shooting officers brings officers together in solidarity. KM agrees that when he was there, this area was not closed off and there was lots of room to move up there. KM was also aware that Wilby had been shot at by someone at the camp. He was also aware of a police helicopter being shot at on August 24. Denies being angry at camp occupants. Does say there was "a lot of fear." Agrees he's heard of a term called trigger-happy. "There was a lot of fear in my bones and anyone that wasn't, I'd say wasn't normal." Agrees he was uncertain and nervous.

KM says he can't understand why a police officer would shoot a dog and says it wasn't in the plan. He spoke to Debolt and asked why he shot the dog. Debolt told KM that he believed the dog could be a problem to the operation. Agrees that this could be a problem. Dog was buried in ground by KM and Debolt two days later. Did this because dog was starting to smell. He didn't invite Ident. team to come out and take pictures of dog, though is aware that they did come out and take photos of truck.

KM agrees his notes are typewritten and says he made them Sept. 12 following his interview with Kiloh. 13:43 is noted when truck is seen with weapons. 13:55 is noted when the truck is heading south on 1000 Road. Agrees that he heard this on the radio. KM also agrees that if you backed up Wescam video 12 minutes from the time of the red truck heading south, this is when you'd see the weapons. He later observed video at Command Centre in 100 Mile House. Says he was there for another reason, but they were playing it so that's why he saw only a portion. KM admits that, on the video, he never saw a person carrying a rifle into the truck. Says that he relied on radio transmission that occupants in truck carried weapons. Says Sgt. Marsh definitely radioed KM that occupants were carrying rifles. Marsh was on the ground and on same frequency as KM. Agrees this wasn't a transmission from the Command Centre. He claims that someone from Eye in the Sky, who they also had communications with, did tell him that weapons were seen. KM still maintains that if no weapons were seen he wouldn't have blown up the truck. KM says Ron German was the person who was in Eye in the Sky.

GW would like to play Eye in the Sky video. LB says that there is a videotape that hasn't been filed with more video footage on it and if Defense wants to play the whole tape, that's fine. GW says no problem - we can play whole thing then. J stands down until whole tape is found and prepared for jury.

We're back. LB explains that this is a video taken on Sept. 11 and that it should be marked as an exhibit. GW agrees and it is marked Ex. 115.

Video is played. View is from Eye in the Sky of camp below. Red truck seen parked near other cars near cabin. Persons seen on ground around tents and walking. A person is seen walking to rear of truck and placing something in rear. Truck turns around. Dog seen following and then jumps into bed. Truck drives off 50 feet and stops at blue tarp structure. Person comes out of structure and walks to truck. Truck backs up and returns to camp area. Person seen walking to truck from cabin area. Another person walks to rear. Seems to be general milling around truck by various folks.

GW notes that 13 minutes into the film, there is a break in continuity. Another break occurs again two minutes later, but GW doesn't note it for the record. GW notes that real time is now 12:20 p.m. Lots of footage circling the camp. Nothing of interest. Truck finally leaves the camp. For the record, it is now 12:24 p.m.

Truck makes its way down to Lakeshore Road and makes it to a gate on the fence. Person gets out at the gate. KM understands this is the fence that marked the edge of the no-go zone. They leave gate - the time is now 12:28 - and they are past the no-go zone boundary. Truck proceeds east. Truck moves slowly next to deep ruts of dirt road. KM agrees that in the back of the truck, there appears to be blue containers and a dog. Time is now 12:31 p.m. GW suggests a break for lunch. J agrees.

L/ Without jury. MA asks that Ex. 201 be marked for identification. J agrees.

Jury in.

GW cont'd with Cst. Mann - Real time is 1:35 p.m. Video back on. Truck comes out to 1000 Road and turns north. KM says that checkpoint is a half kilometre south. Says he couldn't see this intersection from his vantage point. Hodgkin and Marsh are located 200 metres south of this intersection. Truck drives north and stops short of trees laying on road. Person gets out of truck and walks past logs, northward. KM agrees that 1000 Road is blocked at this point to traffic. KM says he knew that these persons were at log through radio transmissions. Agrees he can't see on video any weapons. Notes that there was also a Kamloops ERT team north of here. He's not sure if it was his team or Kamloops that reported that these persons were armed. Rocks are also seen on road. He doesn't believe it was the police that placed the rocks on the road. Two people are seen walking on road. GW wonders if it ever crossed his mind to run up to log area and arrest these people now that they were out of their truck. KM: "No. That wasn't a safe option." Dog is also seen now with two people walking on road. They are walking very slowly and appear to be waiting. They head back to truck. They get in and turn truck around.

Truck proceeds south. KM agrees that no one could pass this road. Truck returns to intersection and then goes east a hundred metres. It stops and then turns around heading back to intersection. It now turns south. It passes watering hole. Truck blows up and smoke and dust fly skyward. Video paused. KM confirms this is data sheet. KM: "I don't think this accurately depicts this. It looks a lot worse here." KM confirms that he doesn't think this is a land mine. KM says that this could "possibly" cause harm or death.

KM says he was north of explosion on lake side. Confirms he is armed like others with M-16s. He and others are there to arrest people in truck. Confirms that he heard on radio that a van was heading south with native elders. Knew they were heading to camp with approval of RCMP for negotiations. KM confirms that he knew that it was a negotiating team heading in to camp. Says that he could have said not to blow up the truck, but chose not to. He was relying on other's information that persons in truck were armed. He knew that elders couldn't cross log. He says that he knew that the people in the truck were going to do his team harm because they had done similar things in the past.

He admits that he never saw any weapon himself being carried. Yet, in his notebook, there is a reference that at 13:43, people are carrying weapons. At 13:55, he records "truck south, shots". Agrees that there is 12 minutes difference. GW points out that they watched video for 45 minutes and KM agrees that he never saw any weapons. Agrees that he made his statement the next day. Agrees that he had the opportunity to put anything extra in his notebook. GW suggests that he added to his notebook the note of carrying weapons after he gave his statement to the investigator. Denies that his primary concern was that the dog had been killed. KM says he believed they were carrying weapons despite video showing nothing. Says that Sgt. Marsh observed weapons and GW reminds him that Marsh was 200 yards away.

KM maintains that Marsh said there was a weapon barrel sticking out of the window.

Video continued. KM agrees he sees dog, but isn't sure it's confused as GW suggests. KM admits he is a dog owner, but that wasn't his concern - he was concentrating on truck. Video played and GW points out two people running into bush. KM sees this, but can't say for sure if they are armed. He is certain that these two people did not fire at his team. KM knows that the Attorney General for B.C. is Ujjal Dosanjh. He did not hear Dosanjh give a TV interview describing the incident. Knows that the media was 17 or 18 km away. Knows that Sgt. Montague is one of the people giving the media news. Now dog is seen running as a Bison rams the truck. Jury member, knowing dog is about to be killed, turns his head away. Jury member won't watch as the dog is shot. KM admits that the plan was for the Bison to ram the truck to possibly shake them up. GW suggests it was intended to cause injury, but KM denies this. Says that intention was to ram vehicle so that people couldn't pull their weapons on them. Denies intentions to hurt the people.

Video replayed. GW points out dog and black mark on screen. KM believes this is Cst. Arthur, not Debolt, who shot dog. Agrees that running dog had not attacked anyone at this point. Dog is shot and killed. KM agrees that there was more than one shot fired. He looked at dog about a half hour later. Noticed that bullets had hit body, but can't recall where exactly. Agrees that bullets appears to have knocked dog to the side of the road and also agrees that a shot probably hit the dog in the side of the rib cage. KM agrees that the first shots of the day were fired by the RCMP - not by camp occupants. GW asks that if someone got on the TV to say that the camp people fired first, KM says that maybe the media people hadn't got the right information. Admits he never told Montague or Dosanjh that they may have got their facts wrong.

Video played. Bison now sitting next to red truck. No movement for a moment. People exit back of Bison. KM says these people would be members from inside of the Red Bison - either Arseneault or Lafond. Says that this wouldn't be Wilby because he's several kilometres up the road. Bison backs up and stops. A minute later, a blue van is seen pulling up near log on road further north. KM says that he had no communications with the negotiators. He isn't sure if he was aware they were there or not because of all the confusion. Says that he took up a position between the truck spot and the forward observation position. J asks video to be stopped because he just received a message. Stood down.

In the hallway, Glen Kealey speculates that the video camera in the courtroom under the smoked glass is fed into the Crown Prosecutor's office or Dosanjh's office and they didn't like the way the trial was going. A few minutes later, it is learned that a Justice died at noon. DC snipes that this is probably blown out of proportion - he was probably "disabled" or "neutralized".

Jury and Cst. Mann back.

GW - video is played again. The camera swings around. A blue truck or car is seen driving out of the camp area. KM admits that he heard about vehicle over radio. Says that he was only overhearing conversations and that Sgt. Armstrong was responsible for what was happening over at the lake side. Now an APC is spotted. KM denies that the Bison was sent in to intercept the blue vehicle - says the Bison was at intersection to provide safety in this area. Says that RCMP members on the lake reported swimmers in the water. Later the Bison was sent in to arrest the two. Says aircraft with Wescam is flying at 6,000-8,000 feet. Camera scans shoreline.

Blue car is seen driving back towards camp, west along lakeshore. Bison seen driving on lakeshore now. Camera scans along water. KM reiterates that he is the team leader, but Sgt. Armstrong is in charge of team by water. The video is frozen when flashes are spotted on the water. KM says he wasn't aware that Cpl. Preston was firing into the water. Bison now seen turning north away from lake and it charges north. Tape ends. It's now 3:10 p.m. on the courtroom clock.

Re: gloves. KM says he found them on Sept. 14. The dog man found them at the base of tree stump and handed them to KM. He agrees that he doesn't know who's gloves they are. Ex. 187 of gloves is shown. GW: "Now we know where OJ Simpson was." Jury snickers. "Don't worry, he's not going to try them on." KM agrees that there are no identification marks on the inside. KM says it's unlikely that these are RCMP gloves because he can't recall any of his members having gloves like that too. Says he feels they had been dropped there recently because of their condition. Agrees that this was hunting season. Admits that it was an assumption that gloves belonged to people from camp.

When he saw weapons in truck, he said they were sitting there undisturbed. Says he didn't see any rifle holders in trucks. Says weapons were standing up straight with butts on the floor and the barrels pointing up. GW suggests that the weapon was placed there after the explosion. KM suggests this is indicative that maybe the Bison didn't hit truck as hard as it appears in the video. GW wonders if impact was light enough to not leave any paint marks on Bison. KM denies this. GW wonders if someone could have pulled the weapons out from behind the seat and propped them up on the seat after the explosion. KM doesn't think so as he was the first person there and saw them sitting there. Remembers a bolt action rifle and something that looked like an AK-47. Doesn't remember any tape wrapped around stock.

KM knows who Dosanjh and Montague are. GW wants to play media tape of Dosanjh and Montague speaking of incident because it shows bad faith on the RCMP which is relevant. LB doesn't see how this bad faith is relevant at the time. HR suggests that if it isn't submitted as an exhibit, it should be marked for identification. Montague may be called later. Says that the alternative is that he has to call this officer back. HR says this witness is a good witness for a general sense of what was going on. When Montague and Dosanjh are brought in and their testimony is called incorrect, someone has to be shown as giving this story to them. KM is as good a person to report on this as anyone. ST says that many witnesses have come forward with information that was gathered by a number of means that helped form their opinions for resulting actions. Who better than KM, a team leader involved with an incident, to comment on whether reports put out by RCMP are accurate or not? GW says that at some point, it would be beneficial for jury to see this to understand what management was saying. J asks jury to step out.

J says to GW that normally, you'd ask witness if he said this or that and then you could play video to show difference. J says this witness didn't tell anyone. GW says that the RCMP wanted to orchestrate a scene so they put media far away and after incident, played up idea that camp was full of terrorists starting incidents. Says that Montague and Dosanjh put out a false report saying that the camp occupants fired first. Montague is not on the witness list. GW says that the jury can decide that the RCMP orchestrated this and this is part of a conspiracy to mislead the public and the police. The jury can take this into account as evidence as part of the narrative. J says it isn't part of the narrative of this incident. GW points out it is part of the narrative of the whole orchestration. This witness can look at footage and say that this didn't happen. HR says that it's unlikely that an application to bring the AG in would be made.

DC says that the info highway in the RCMP is two way. From the field and from above. Somewhere there is misinformation. With 80 officers involved, it's not going to be easy to get an officer to necessarily know what another officer did. He asks for some latitude in dealing with the unwieldy machine of the RCMP. LB says that relevance is essential and this evidence isn't admissible through this witness. This isn't proper. The witness will be asked questions about it and will be asked to identify the speakers as Dosanjh and Montague, but this witness can't elaborate on when this video was shot or in what context their remarks were made.

Wolverine - says that as he is charged with murder, all evidence should be brought out whether it is Montague or Dosanjh. This is just a coverup when the RCMP lies to the Canadian public. How can these people be called squatters or terrorists? This all has to come out if the Prosecutor keeps covering up for the RCMP.

J reiterates the arguments that the Defense theory is that RCMP planned and created a further excuse for planned action by gaining public support. Says that these are unusual circumstances and normally would agree with Crown, but he will give some latitude now.

Jury back. J explains that video is not properly put through this witness, but will allow a shortcut to enable whether the witness was the source of any of the comments made by Dosanjh or Montague.

Video played. Dosanjh says situation is very dangerous. Says that police had cordoned off area and that red truck was involved in previous shooting at helicopters. Truck was incapacitated, three persons ran into bush and fired at police. Also says that force is an alternative if negotiations fail. Video paused. KM recognizes Dosanjh as Attorney General. KM clarifies that from his observations, two people left the truck. KM clarifies that the truck occupants did not fire at team.

Video rolled. Montague says truck, whose occupants fired at helicopter, ran over "early warning device". Two, maybe three, people ran into bush with weapons. RCMP chased them, but stopped when they were fired on by truck occupants. Says that a Bison was incapacitated by AK-47 fire. Says that Wolverine said no one would leave the camp. Says that constantly, the camp people have fired first at the RCMP. Video ends.

KM clarifies that at time of broadcast, team hadn't come out of the field and hadn't been debriefed yet. Replays part that occupants took weapons with them. Agrees that he didn't see weapons being taken with him nor did he see weapons on the video. GW asks if the information Montague gave was correct. KM says that he doesn't know who gave him the information. Plays part where Montague says RCMP were fired on. KM agrees that his team was never shot at. Agrees that some of the public would be upset if they heard a police officer was fired on. GW: "These people didn't fire on team, did they?" KM: "Not right away." Groans from jury as KM evades direct question. J says that all GW can ask is if KM gave this information to Montague. GW does and KM say he never gave information that occupants of truck shot at members then.

Video rolled. Montague: "never had the RCMP ever fired first." GW asks who fired the first shots on Sept. 11. KM dodges and says that first shots exchanged were from the camp. GW clarifies that the first shots were by the RCMP when they shot the dog.

   * Day 39: Monday, September 16            * Day 42: Thursday, September 19
   * Day 40: Tuesday, September 17           * Day 43: Friday, September 20
   * Day 41: Wednesday, September 18