Police arrest a man during a protest at the G20 summit in Toronto June 27, 2010.
Credits: REUTERS/CHRISTINNE MUSCHI
It's expected a handful of senior officers are also in hot water, thanks to the Ontario Independent Police Review Director's (OIPRD) 300-page report outlining alleged systemic abuses of power and individual accusations of excessive of force.
"That number is not necessarily a bad thing considering the amount of conflict we faced," police union boss Mike McCormack said Thursday, defending the frontline officers facing tribunals.
The Toronto Police Association president confirmed 29 of his members have been told they face Police Service Act charges for excessive use of force, misconduct and unlawful arrest, among other offences.
But McCormack pointed out those charges remain "unsubstantiated allegations" at this point.
He recently tried to have the charges against his members thrown out in an Ontario court because they were about 18 months beyond the statute of limitations.
"But our motion was quashed based on prematurity," McCormack said, explaining the union may be able to return to the court later, once things unfold further, and try again.
In the meantime, he said the frontline officers have no problem facing tribunals.
"Where we've made mistakes, we have had no problem accepting responsibilty," McCormack said, adding that's what happened with the officers who removed their name tags during the G20.
He wouldn't comment on the allegations against senior officers, who according to the OIPRD report may have been following Chief Bill Blair's order to "take back the city."
But he did say everyone, regardless of rank, should have to face the music if it's determined they did something wrong.
"The chief should be just as accountable as frontline officers," McCormack said.