West Lincoln Mayor and Niagara Regional Councillor David Bylsma Reportedly Among Those Facing Charges
More than 10 others have reportedly received summons, with more likely to come, according to Niagara Regional Police
I want to remind residents of the seriousness of the third wave of COVID-19 and the “potential penalties that could be levied should you be found to have broken provincial directives. …I would encourage residents who may be planning to attend future demonstrations to seriously reconsider.” – Niagara Regional Chair Jim Bradley
West Lincoln Mayor David Bylsma reportedly among those charged for role in April 10th anti-lockdown rally in St. Catharines/Niagara..
Breaking News Posted by Doug Draper at Niagara At Large
April 15th, 2021
Niagara At Large received the following statement from Niagara Regional Chair late this Thursday, April 15th about the controversial anti-lockdown rally that took place in St. Catharines this past Saturday, April 10th –
A Statement from Regional Chair Bradley regarding the recent issuance of provincial summons –
“Earlier today (this April 15th, 2021), a number of Niagara Region residents were issued Part III summonses under both the Reopening Ontario Act and the Emergency Management and Civil Protections Act in relation to the anti-lockdown demonstrations that took place April 10, 2021.
Niagara Regional Chair Jim Bradley
“If found guilty, individuals could face fines of up to $100,000. The act also has provisions for imprisonment for a period not exceeding year.
“These residents are entitled to due process on this matter. It is important to note that all of these individuals are presumed innocent until proven in court.
That said, I want to remind residents of the seriousness of the third wave of COVID-19 and the “potential penalties that could be levied should you be found to have broken provincial directives. The provincial stay-at-home orders are designed to help protect the health and safety of residents, and willfully breaking these rules could result in serious fines and even jail time.
“As Regional Chair, I fully respect an individual’s Charter right to peacefully assemble and express themselves. However, all residents are strongly reminded that such gatherings cannot breach any applicable statues or municipal by-laws.
“I would encourage residents who may be planning to attend future demonstrations to seriously reconsider. Even if these residents struggle to accept the legitimate health and safety risks associated with large gatherings, I suggest they consider the potential personal repercussions of significant fines and jail time.
“In regards to Councillor Bylsma, I want to assure the public that I have heard their concerns and I am taking this issue seriously. To that end, we will be discussing this matter as council in the coming days.”
Jim Bradley, Niagara Regional Chair
Now here are excerpts from a Niagara Regional Police News Release posted late this April 15th –
Police on fines – Charges issued following St. Catharines gathering
On Saturday April 10, 2021, a gathering was organized and held in the City of St. Catharines in response to recently implemented government restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19.
1 District (St. Catharines/Thorold) uniform officers were in attendance to ensure public safety and keep the peace. Since that time detectives have been continuing to investigate the gathering to determine appropriate charges.
In the duration of a gathering, officers use discretion to best manage the situation to not cause it to escalate and to preserve the peace. The leading principle is keeping the peace and public safety and in doing so, at times, must utilize discretion when it comes to immediate enforcement.
As per the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, hosting or organizing a public event or other gather where the number of people in attendance exceeds the number permitted may lead to higher penalties.
The investigation by detectives focused on such individuals, resulting in the following charges against a 50-year-old West Lincoln male and a 47-year-old St. Catharines male under the ROA:
Part III summons Fail to comply with a continued 7.0.2 Order contrary to the Ontario Re-Opening Act 2020, section 10(1) 82/20 Ontario Regulation, schedule 4 section 1(c)
Part III summons for Fail to Comply with an Order made during a declared emergency section 7.0.11(1) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protections Act
Further charges are pending, in addition to those issued by Niagara Regional by-law to attendees of the event. …”
A Footnote from Doug Draper at Niagara At Large –
This story and information about those who have received summons will be reported on NAL in the hours and days ahead.
For related stories Niagara At Large has posted on this controversial rally, click on the following –
St. Catharine Mayor Calls Anti-COVID Lockdown Protest Irresponsible, Dangerous
Authorities Should Throw Book at Bylsma and Other Ringleaders of Maskless, Anti-Lockdown Rally
NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below.
“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders
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*It is not lost on those of us who have made, and continue to make, huge
sacrifices that the pandemic is nowhere close to being under control due to
the selfish ignorance of those who feel that their personal rights trump
social responsibility. *
*It is not lost on those of us who made, and continue to make, huge
sacrifices that the pandemic is nowhere close to being under control due to
the presence of the least effective politicians, police enforcement and
bylaw enforcement in the history of the Niagara region. If leadership
starts at the top, there has been NONE. *
*From the Niagara Regional Police news release (above) “As per the
Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, hosting or
organizing a public event or other gather where the number of people in
attendance exceeds the number permitted MAY lead to higher penalties.”
“MAY” lead to higher penalties???? Why not “WILL” lead to higher
penalties??? What good is a public order if it has no teeth? *
*Demonstrators are well aware that police and bylaw enforcement have been
guilty of dereliction of duty since day-one of the pandemic. Demonstrators
are well aware that the mayors of tourist towns in particular have done an
abysmal job of dispensing fines, dispersing crowds and ORDERING (not
asking) tourists to go home. *
*We are over a year into this pandemic. The toll on human lives, children,
our senior citizens trapped like rats in third world assisted-living
residents, small businesses, the economy, our first responders, etc. has
been catastrophic yet here we are with the police still dishing verbal
effluent like “The leading principle is keeping the peace and public safety
and in doing so, at times, must utilize discretion when it comes to
immediate enforcement.”. Whatever happened to handcuffing and tossing into
squad cars?? Could there possibly be anyone in the crowd deserving of
better?? What am I missing?? *
“If you really believe that your cloth mask works, then why are you worried if I don’t wear one?”
“If your mask works, and I am not wearing a mask, then my COVID breath shouldn’t penetrate your mask, should it? And if your mask works, then why should you care if I am 6 feet or six inches from you?”
“Are you sure that your righteous outrage against maskless people is really about your safety—or is it about virtue-signalling, irrational fear, superstition and power tripping? Does being a snitch make you feel good about yourself? Does it make you feel important? Are you a bully? Are you possessed by a totalitarian impulse to control other people’s lives? Are you a narcissistic politician desperate to appear as a tireless advocate for the public good? Is abuse against maskless people not classic displacement behaviour? Instead of focusing on your own shortcomings you deflect your attention to someone else’s alleged transgressions. Try removing the beam from your own eye first.”
“If you choose not to look at the evidence, or lack of it, for the efficacy of cloth masks, then the least you can do is examine your logic. Stop panicking and start thinking straight.”
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