An association representing deaf Ontarians expressed outrage this week after a video appears to show a police officer in Burlington refusing to write out an explanation to a deaf theft suspect why he was under arrest.
The video, posted on Facebook on Nov. 8 by a male high school student in Burlington, shows an officer standing in front of a middle-aged man in parking lot of a business.
In it, the Halton Regional Police officer repeatedly asks the suspect to turn around and put his hands behind his back, and the suspect gestures first that he cannot speak, also that he cannot hear. Then he forcefully gestures a ‘writing on paper’ motion.
“I am not going to write it for you, I am not going to write it for you,” the officer repeats, continuing to urge the man to turn around and put his hands behind his back. “I will explain it after,” the officer says. A second officer driving a marked SUV pulls up to the scene and gets out.
“He’s not listening,” the first officer says to the next.
The officers put the suspect face down on the ground, handcuff him, and search his pant pockets and his jacket and then put him in the back of a police cruiser.