Justice Normand Glaude forever tells the public and witnesses to wait until all the evidence is in before drawing conclusions.
He doesn’t practice what the preaches, at least not when it comes to rallying to the defence of the Cornwall Police Service (CPS) and, as you will eventually see, in the process, haranguing and badgering witness Carson Chisholm to change or temper his view of the police service.
Before the badgering began Carson, as you will also see, made mention of Colin McKinnon.
Some background is in order to understand why McKinnon’s name was raised in the first place and to put the rest of the Chisholm/Glaude exchange into some context.
This is a longer blog, but I realized as I worked on this portion of Carson’s testimony it that there are some facts which need to get out if people are to understand why Carson was so adamant that Perry should never have been charged with misconduct in the first place.
Here we go….
Prior to his appointment to bench Colin McKinnon provided legal counsel to the Cornwall Police Service (CPS) and its Chief, Claude Shaver.
Six weeks into the Leduc trial, after the name Perry Dunlop was introduced into evidence, McKinnon was forced to recuse himself, that after being publicly confronted in court by Dick Nadeau regarding McKinnon’s serious conflict of interest related to Perry Dunlop and former Chief Claude Shaver.
At that time McKinnon was forced to acknowledge he had “years of involvement” with the CPS and had prior dealings with Shaver.
McKinnon initially claimed he had no recollection of Perry Dunlop dealings, only that the name Perry Dunlop “rang a bell.” After he headed off to review files at the CPS to “refresh” his memory McKinnon returned to the Cornwall courtroom and had this to say:
I took the precaution yesterday of going to the police service to determine whether I had any involvement with the Cornwall Police Service in relation to Constable Dunlop. And indeed I did. I have not seen my own files, which are in storage and take, even if expedited, about a week to get out. But I think there was sufficient information in the Cornwall Police file to refresh my memory.
……In February of 1994, I was consulted, at my office in Ottawa, by the Cornwall Police Service with respect to Perry Dunlop and specifically with respect to his disclosure of a statement to third parties. My view was sought. Clearly the file discloses that I took the view that the disclosure of that statement by Constable Dunlop constituted an offence against discipline. In May of 1994…I sent out draft charges based on the information I had received. I set out three charges, three counts relating to the disclosure to Mr. Abell of a copy of a statement that had been the subject of an on-going police investigation within the Cornwall Police.
….it was my advice to Chief Johnston that the charges against Constable Dunlop should be dealt with by an outside agency….The Police Services Act allows a procedure whereby the Chief of Police can refer the charges for hearing to the Police Complaints Commission. And that is in fact what was done in Constable Dunlop’s case. A hearing was arranged. As everyone knows, Constable Dunlop was found not guilty of the charges. An appeal was taken to the Divisional Court and the appeal was dismissed. That is the history and that is the extent of my involvement with Constable Dunlop.
I must add here that shortly thereafter Justice McKinnon said: “None of us foresaw, in this case, that Perry Dunlop would be involved and it came up quite late in the trial.”
The truth of that matter is that the name Perry Dunlop was raised in the earliest days of the Leduc trial, back when a trial by jury was still the plan. Perry Dunlop’s name was raised then. In fact one or more Perry Dunlop questions had been proposed for use in screening potential jurors. What the name Perry Dunlop meant to McKinnon when the Leduc “trial” was in its infancy I have no idea, nor do I know if he thought to ask what relevance “Perry Dunlop” had to the trial or why potential jurors should be thus screened. Nor do I know if he wondered aloud why the name “rang a bell” – or if indeed at that moment in time it rang any bells.
Anyway, that’s where Colin McKinnon fits in and that’s a little background on who had input into the charges against Perry Dunlop.
The long and short of it is that McKinnon, long time legal counsel to the Cornwall Police Service and defender of Claude Shaver, was in on the ‘charge Perry Dunlop’ loop from start to finish. It doesn’t come through as clearly in the transcript as in the courtroom, but it’s clear enough (“that is the history and that is the extent of my involvement”) that McKinnon was also involved in the appeal.
The charges against Constable Dunlop
Now if we go back even further, almost to the beginning of the scandal and cover-up, we see that Colin McKinnon’s 04 May 1994 draft to Staff Sgt. Brendan Wells was adapted by CPS. Part of that draft explicitly states that Perry was guilty of misconduct under the Police Services Act because “you [Perry] did on or about the 30th day of September 1993, divulge a matter which it was your duty to keep secret, namely, you did provide a copy of a statement to Mr. Abell, a representative of the Children’s Aid Society” of the David Silmser (in those days referred to as D.S.) sex abuse allegations against Father Charles MacDonald and probation officer Ken Seguin.
Note, and this is of utmost importance, that McKinnon and the CPS was of the mind the sex abuse allegations should be kept “secret.”
Perry was charged.
The Charges are Stayed
On 31 January 1995 the Board of Inquiry, in upholding Perry Dunlop’s motion that the board had no jurisdiction in the matter, ruled in part that,
It is …clear (even from the evidence of Staff Sgt. Brunet alone) that the allegations by D.S. appeared to be truthful and that D.S., when still a child, had in fact suffered abuse at the hands of the priest involved. As such, Constable Dunlop would have had “reasonable grounds to suspect that a child … may have suffered abuse.” Accordingly, he was then required to “forthwith report the suspicion and the information on which it is based” to the Children’s Aid Society.
Par 3 of the Child and Family Services Act has been created to provide legislative response to the obvious public demand for protection of children. To facilitate such protection and to facilitate reporting of suspected cases of abuse, the legislature created immunity for those who form suspicion upon reasonable grounds and who are required by the legislation to forthwith report it. The reporting creates a facility to protect not only the child who may have suffered abuse but also any other children that might come into future contact with the suspected abuser.
Therefore, even after the child who may have been abused reaches the age of majority, the duty to report the suspicion continues to exist.
The Board upheld Dunlop’s motion and the complaint against him was stayed.
But do you see that the three-man board (Marek Tuffman, Nhung Tomkins and Winston Davis) concluded that the D.S. allegations “appeared to be truthful” and that Perry had “reasonable grounds” to suspect abuse and hence a duty to report to the Children’s Aid Society (CAS) immediately?
Not only that, and equally important, do you see that the board ruled that the Child and Family Services Act was created not only to protect children who have been abused, but also those who may come in contact with the suspect abuser.
And finally, note that the board explicitly stated that “the legislature created immunity for those who form suspicion upon reasonable grounds and who are required by the legislation to forthwith report it.”
The latter of course raises some self-evident questions: Where was Perry’s immunity? Where is it now?
Not only that, but what about all the members of the CPS who knew the sex abuse allegations against Father Charlie and Ken Seguin had been shelved? In this instance why they were shelved matters not. The question is why did those officers/members not report the allegations to the CAS?
Why for that matter why did Claude Shaver not report to CAS? And why were all those who knew and failed to report never charged for failing to fulfill their duty to report?
The appeal to Divisional court
It is interesting to note that the Police Complaints Commissioner actually contested and unsuccessfully brought a motion to quash Dunlop’s motion.
Failing that, the Police Complaints Commissioner appealed the board’s decision to the Ontario Divisional Court.
On 07 December 1995 Justices Southey, McRae and Desmarais dismissed the appeal with costs. That ruling states in part:
Const. Dunlop was asked on September 29 1993 to turn in any copy of D.S.’s statement in his possession. He refused to comply with this request but rather gave the CAS a copy on September 30. His refusal to comply did not avoid the protection to which he was entitled under s-s (7). He was under a duty pursuant to s-s (3) to report the abuse “and the information on which it is based” to the CAS.
For these reasons the appeal is dismissed with costs, hereby fixed at $2,500.
The ruling also notes that Section 72 (7) of the Child and Family Services Act
provides protection to police, medical and other professionals who are impressed with the duty to disclose abuse. The very wording of the subsection makes this clear: “This section applies although the information reported may be confidential or privileged. … .”
To find otherwise would place a police officer or other persons referred to in s-s.(4) in an impossible position. Such persons would be subject to to prosecution under the Child and Family Services Act and liable to a fine of up to $1,000 if they fail to report abuse. If on the other hand they do report a suspected case of abuse they would be subject to professional disciplinary action.
Can it be any clearer? The duty to report trumps Perry’ or any other police officer’s obligation to comply with an order to keep sex abuse allegations “secret.”
Constable Perry Dunlop did the right thing.
Where was the CPS?
You will see below that during Carson Chisholm’s inquisition at the weave Shed courtroom Justice Glaude and Peter Manderville take pains to extricate the Cornwall Police Service from this mess. Presumably exoneration lies with the fact that the Police Complaints Commissioner (PCC) – not the CPS – initiated the appeal to Divisional Court. However, I would suggest as you read to bear in mind that the Cornwall Police Service did not seek intervener status at Divisional court to argue against the PCC and on Perry’s behalf.
Nor to my knowledge did the CPS once express public outrage that one of its own, Constable Perry Dunlop, was being persecuted and publicly humiliated for doing “the right thing.”
Nor, to my knowledge, did it apologize to Perry for initiating the action in the first place.
Nor, to my knowledge, did it charge any of its officers who (1) were familiar with the sex abuse allegations against Father MacDonald and Seguin, and (2) felt the allegations had merit, and (3) knew that two suspect paedophiles were at large with ready access to children and hence children were at risk, and, finally (4) kept the allegations “secret” and thereby failed to comply with their legal obligation to report to CAS – for a span of ten months!
And what of Colin McKinnon? What was he doing? What role did he, the long-time counsel for the CPS and friend of its former Chief, play in instigating the appeal to ensure that sex abuse allegations against Charlie and Ken Seguin are kept “secret” and officers who fulfill their moral and legal duty to report are severely disciplined?
I don’t believe anyone covered themselves in glory from the moment they decided to charge Perry for not keeping ‘secrets.’ From that moment the wheels were set in motion to pillory Perry. And while “they” had their sights on Perry Father Charlie was still out and about. True he had been in and out of Southdown, but barring that he was out and about, unfettered and free. He wasn’t charged until March 1996 – three months after Perry Dunlop was completely and finally exonerated for doing the right thing back in 1993 – specifically alerting the CAS to the sex abuse allegations against Charlie and Seguin (Seguin committed suicide in November 1993).
As we well know, the wheels haven’t stopped rolling. While the beleaguered Perry Dunlop gets dragged from one courtroom to the next, villiefied here, lied to there, deceived the other place, all the while trying to hold his head above water, Charlie is out and about. Free as a bird. Charlie “walked” – on Perry’s back.
That’s a bit of the background.
Now back to Weave Shed courtroom
Glaude starts to badger
Carson Chisholm was under cross-examination by Peter Manderville (Cornwall Police Service). Manderville decided to tackle the matter of the appeal (my comments in italics)…
MR. MANDERVILLE: — are you aware, sir, that the Cornwall Police did not appeal Mr.Dunlop’s discipline charges but rather the Public Complaints Commission did?
MR. CHISHOLM: I’m not sure who did. I thought — I think the chief’s lawyer there, Mr. McKinnon. I think he had a hand in that. Was he not the one that recommended that?
[Note that Manderville ignores Carson’s reference to Colin McKinnon. He presses on, attempting to defray the role played by CPS in going after Perry Dunlop with a vengeance]
MR. MANDERVILLE: I’m going to suggest to you, sir, that the appeal was launched by the Public Complaints Commission, a provincial body, and not by the Cornwall Police. Are you aware of that?
MR. CHISHOLM: I’m not sure who did it, really.
At this Justice Glaude jumps into the fray
THE COMMISSIONER: Would it surprise you to know that it wasn’t the Cornwall Police?
MR. CHISHOLM: No, nothing would surprise me, sir, at this point.
THE COMMISSIONER: No, but, you’re saying — no but, let’s be fair a little bit.
Be fair? What does the commissioner mean? Is it unfair for Carson to testify: “nothing would surprise me, sir, at this point”? Carson re-iterates..
MR. CHISHOLM: Well, I’m trying to be as fair as I can and nothing would surprise me at this point. That’s my answer.
But, that’s not good enough for the commissioner
THE COMMISSIONER: No, no —
MR. CHISHOLM: I’m serious.
THE COMMISSIONER: Okay, but see I’m trying to figure things out here.
Figure out what? Carson made his position known. Twice. But, that’s not good enough for Glaude.
MR. CHISHOLM: M’hm.
THE COMMISSIONER: So you testify that Mr.Dunlop was hard done by and treated badly by the Cornwall Police. All right? And that’s what you’re saying and I respect what you’re saying. All right? And you say one of the reasons why you think that the Cornwall Police had it out for him is they continued to appeal.
And you ask me why did they continue to appeal. And this gentleman is putting to you, well, maybe they didn’t appeal. Maybe it was somebody else, and it was out of their hands as to whether or not to appeal – I don’t know but would that change your — would that kind of lessen your criticism of the Cornwall Police, and I don’t know now, but if it wasn’t their decision to appeal?
Note “you testify” that Perry was “hard done by.” And note the patronizing “I respect what you’re saying.” Clearly he does not respect what Carson is saying. He’s trying to get him to change what he says!
And note the suggestion/implication that the appeal was out of the CPS hands! It wasn’t their fault!!!
Carson doesn’t bite
MR. CHISHOLM: And what’s the question?
THE COMMISSIONER: Would it lessen —
MR. CHISHOLM: Would it change my opinion of the Cornwall Police?
THE COMMISSIONER: No, no, not change; no, no. No, not change it completely, but you know like it’s one —
MR. CHISHOLM: It wouldn’t even change it a little bit really.
And now Glaude is virtually beseeching Carson to reconsider his opinion of the CPS, at least a little bit…
THE COMMISSIONER: It wouldn’t change a little bit? Not at all?
And Carson essentially says it makes no difference. It was either the CPS or they were pulling the strings
MR. CHISHOLM: No really — it’s them or they’re behind the scenes doing it or whatever. Or they instigating it?
THE COMMISSIONER: Okay.
MR. CHISHOLM: Basically.
THE COMMISSIONER: Okay, your position is that they had a hand in it no matter what.
Carson now goes back to Justice Glaude’s comment that Carson testified “Mr.Dunlop was hard done by and treated badly by the Cornwall Police,” and away they go
MR. CHISHOLM: When you say, they’re hard done by, I —
THE COMMISSIONER: Well, hard done by; you’re saying that the Cornwall Police —
MR. CHISHOLM: I thought they were the ones that instigated these charges, police or discipline or whatever they call them, —
THE COMMISSIONER: Yes.
MR. CHISHOLM: charges against Dunlop for reporting —
THE COMMISSIONER: Yes.
MR. CHISHOLM: — a suspected pedophile.
THE COMMISSIONER: Yes.
MR. CHISHOLM: Who the OPP eventually charged with I don’t know how many charges of doing kids.
THE COMMISSIONER: Right.
And that brief ‘amiable’ exchange comes to grinding halt as you will see as soon as Carson says Perry had good reason to report to the CAS
MR. CHISHOLM: So I think he had a good reason to report that to the CAS.
THE COMMISSIONER: Well, just a second, just — see, you are missing the point again.
Who’s missing the point?! Once again Carson tries to make his point
MR. CHISHOLM: No, well, not really. The point I’m trying to make is I think he had a good reason to go to the Children’s Aid Society despite their telling him not to go there.
THE COMMISSIONER: Right.
MR. CHISHOLM: You understand?
THE COMMISSIONER: Yes.
MR. CHISHOLM: And then they charged him for doing it —
THE COMMISSIONER: Yes.
MR. CHISHOLM: — which was his sworn duty to do.
THE COMMISSIONER: Yes.
MR. CHISHOLM: Does that sound like they’re on his side of that issue?
Again, Justice Glaude is not amused
THE COMMISSIONER: Okay, just a second.
MR. CHISHOLM: They’re the ones that instigated it, you know.
THE COMMISSIONER: And they lost.
They lost! Is Justice Glaude actually implying here that the charges were no big deal because at the end of the day they went nowhere? It looked and sounded like it. I dare say Perry and Helen Dunlop would have something to say about that. The spent close to two years of their lives living under the dark shadow cast upon Perry by Colin McKinnon and the CPS.
Incidentally, there was no mention of that “loss” when Justice Glaude went to Divisional Court to wheedle an inter-provincial subpoena to force Perry Dunlop back to Cornwall and onto the witness stand. In that instance, amongst other errors, the commission pointed out to Justice Lederer that Perry was “disciplined.” That in and of itself is true. But, it is a half truth and misrepresents the facts. Lederer was not told that Perry was exonerated, completely exonerated – that Perry was unjustly disciplined and fully exonerated for refusing to keep “silent” and thereby upholding the law to protect children.
One can only speculate why the commissioner and his staff neglected to advise Lederer of the CPS “loss.”
I think there’s something amiss with the transcript for Carson’s next comment. I don’t recall him saying “sin”, but anyway…
MR. CHISHOLM: Yeah, but that didn’t take that sin down. I mean it was appealed.
And now Glaude is happy. Yes indeed. It was appealed. This is back where he wants to be. And what if it turns out it wasn’t the CPS which appealed? Carson has already said what he thinks of that, but away we go again…
THE COMMISSIONER: And the issue is who appealed. And what this gentleman is just suggesting to you is what happens if it comes out in facts, you know.
MR. CHISHOLM: Yes.
THE COMMISSIONER: That the Cornwall Police really didn’t appeal. It was somebody else that was totally — and I don’t know about this — but totally separate from the Cornwall Police?
Right. How “totally separate”?
No matter. It makes no difference to Carson whether it was CPS up front or behind the scenes
MR. CHISHOLM: I don’t see that it makes a whole, huge bunch of difference. Who — if they did it or only were behind the scenes.
And still Glaude wants to badger and harangue
THE COMMISSIONER: But let’s assume for a minute —
MR. CHISHOLM: You know?
MR. CHISHOLM: It’s kind of splitting hairs really in a sense.
And that brought that particular run of badgering on behalf of the CPS and doing Manderville’s work to a merciful end.
THE COMMISSIONER: Really? Okay.
MR. CHISHOLM: Well, I would think so.
THE COMMISSIONER: Okay, no, that’s your evidence, and that’s fine. I respect that. Thank you.
I must say as I wound my way through this and looked back through the Leduc transcripts I was reminded yet again what a ruse this inquiry is.
Do you realize that this inquiry can not call Colin McKinnon to testify to account for his conduct at the Leduc trial? He is a federally-appointed judge. That puts him and all his Project Truth trial colleagues beyond the scope of the provincial mandate.
Justice McKinnon can’t be touched. Not in his capacity as a Project Truth trial judge who took the bench presumably forgetful that he was up to his eyeballs in conflict.
I believe Premier McGuinty and Attorney General Michael Bryant could have decided the inquiry should be a joint Federal-Provincial inquiry. That would at least have allowed them to delve into what happened in one Project Truth courtroom after the other manned by a federally-appointed judge, i.e., those trials which saw one “alleged” paedophile after the other “walk” and which got the entire community up in arms, crying “cover-up” louder than ever and demanding an inquiry harder than before.
But,no. The inquiry can’t touch the conduct of the federally-appointed judges.
Clever indeed. A mandate which avoids any reference whatever to the allegations of a pedophile rings and cover-up in the first place is also incapable of putting federally-appointed judges on the stand to account for their abysmal conduct on the bench and to field questions regarding their real or perceived conflicts.
How anyone could dare to commission an inquiry under those circumstances and get away with it is beyond me. But, they did it, didn’t they?
Speaking of Justice Colin McKinnon, a final thought.
Will the commission put McKinnon on the stand to account for his involvement in the Cornwall sex abuse scandal and cover-up while he was legal counsel to the CPS?
They should. The public has a right to know. That’s not beyond the scope of the mandate. McKinnon’s actions go squarely to the institutional response of the CPS to David Silmser‘s sex abuse allegations.
I call it shoot the messenger. McKinnon may have some other explanation.
If McKinnon is asked to testify and declines, he could and should be forced. The commission could subpoena him. Carson didn’t want to testify: he was subpoenaed. And look at the lengths they went to to force the Dunlops. Why not equal treatment for McKinnon? He could threatened him with contempt, just like they, the commission, did to Perry. And, if need be they could charge him, just like McKinnon charged Dick Nadeau.
Will we see Justice Colin McKinnon on the stand? I doubt it. I truly doubt it. Just as I doubt we will see Jacques Leduc or Charlie or any of Cornwall’s “alleged” paedophiles on the stand.
What Colin McKinnon did or did not do is, I would guess, as irrelevant to this inquiry as what the “alleged” pedophiles of Cornwall did or didn’t do.
What Perry Dunlop, Helen, Carson Chisolm and Dick Nadeau did or did not do, well, that’s a different matter. That’s what this inquiry is all about….
Shoot the messenger. Protect the “alleged” paedophiles of Cornwall and those who covered up on their behalf – by whatever means and at all costs.
When it comes to cover-ups, the end justifies the means. Always
And that’s enough for now,