Four black teens sue police, allege bias in arrest

Four black teen boys arrested at gunpoint by officers attached to a controversial Toronto police unit have launched a lawsuit alleging racial bias, negligence, assault, and in the case of one of the teens, an “unreasonable” strip search.

Two of five officers named in the suit are also to face Police Act charges following an investigation by Ontario’s Office of the Independent Police Review Director, which found evidence of misconduct.

On Nov. 21, 2011, the four teens were stopped and questioned during the dinner hour outside their community housing complex on Neptune Dr. by two uniformed members of the Toronto Anti-Violence Intervention Strategy police unit.

None of the teens, in the minds of the officers, “were acting suspiciously in any manner,” notes an investigative report viewed by the Star.

Brighton High School students don hijabs to explore literature, religion and identity


Maybe more than any other, high school can be a time when what you choose to wear has a huge impact on your sense of identity.

As students take their first steps into adulthood, they walk a fine line between fitting in with their peers and developing a unique sense of self.

Earlier this fall, a group of AP language students at Brighton High School were asked to read a memoir by Iranian author Azar Nafisi. The book detailed the experiences of women during that country’s religious revolution, including dealing with new standards of modesty in the way they dressed.



A teenage girl police believe was beaten at home was forced to hide her facial injuries behind a burqa, while members of the Muslim community are alleged to have hushed up the abuse.

Her injuries included a broken nose, damaged teeth and extensive bruising. Police claim the 15-year-old was subjected to sustained physical abuse from at least one family member over two or more months.

The abuse was known to some Muslims in the Auckland region, who chose not to report it, they claim.

“The case was brought to police attention when a school friend of the girl was made aware of the abuse and was able to borrow a cellphone from another child at a neighbouring school to call 111,” child protection officer Detective Sarah Boniface said. “The girl was not able to get access to a phone herself.”

She was kept home from school after sustaining the facial injuries, police say.