May 8/97: Stoney Point trial - who began occupation?


Police saw bolt cutters but didn't see who used them to break the lock on the gate through which native protesters streamed on Labor Day 1995

London Free Press
May 8, 1997
Julie Carl - Sarnia Bureau

[SISIS note: The following mainstream news article is provided for reference only, as an example of how mainstream media treats indigenous resistance to genocide. It may contain biased and distorted information and may be missing pertinent facts and/or context.]

SARNIA -- A chain locking a back gate at Ipperwash Provincial Park was cut about 7:30 p.m. on Labor Day 1995 and native protesters poured into the park, on foot and in dozens of vehicles, OPP officers testified Wednesday.

But no witness at the trial of Stoney Point natives accused of forcibly entering the park was able to say who had cut the chain and begun the occupation.

Three cousins -- Roderick Abraham George, 41, Glenn Morris George, 34, and Abraham David George, 26 -- are charged with forcible entry of the park.

Roderick George is also charged with mischief causing damage over $5,000, and David George is charged with assaulting a police officer and assault with a weapon, a flare.

Stoney Point natives entered the park as it closed for the season, saying a burial ground was desecrated when the park was developed. The park remains closed and under native control.

Sgt. Stanley Korosec told Judge A.M. Graham of Ontario court, provincial division, he was near the back gate when the chain was cut.

DIDN'T SEE: Korosec said he saw a native man he didn't know holding a tool which could have been bolt cutters and understood "they were going to be used to cut the chain." But there were many people milling about the area, the officer said, and he never saw the chain cut.

Const. Wade Jacklin said he saw a native youth, about 17 or 18 years old, hit the lock on the gate with a tire iron in an attempt to break it. Officers told the youth not to break the lock and "someone produced bolt cutters" and opened the gate, he said.

Throughout Wednesday's testimony the three accused sat in the front row, two of them holding eagle feathers. About 10 supporters were in the courtroom, including representatives of the Ontario Public Interest Research Group, York University branch, who drove to Sarnia for the trial.

They are among the groups calling for a public inquiry into the OPP shooting death of native protester Dudley George two days after the park occupation began.

On Wednesday Graham also viewed a large wooden sign from the park which was entered into evidence. The sign announced the park was closed and said, "Use at your own risk."

NOT STRUCK: In other evidence, Const. Larry Parks testified he wasn't struck by a flare thrown at him. He said he believed it brushed his clothes and would have hit him had he not seen it at the last moment and moved aside.

Witnesses said they saw David George throw the flare at Parks.

Four witnesses testified they had seen Roderick George smash the rear window of a police cruiser with a stick.

The trial continues today.

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