A controversial arrest of a Kinngait (Cape Dorset) man on Monday night is being condemned by residents and shared widely online due to a video recorded by a community member.

The RCMP consequently revealed on Tuesday that an independent external investigation will be called, and the arresting officer has been removed from the community and placed him on administrative duties while the investigation takes place.

“The RCMP takes the conduct of our officers seriously and want to assure the public we have confidence in the process of the external investigation to determine the circumstances of the event and whether criminal charges should be sworn against the officer. As the matter is now subject of an external criminal investigation and an internal conduct investigation, we cannot comment any further at this time,” RCMP Cpl. Jamie Savikataaq stated in a news release issued Tuesday.

This is the third external investigation that the RCMP have called in just over three months. The other two came after separate incidents in Cape Dorset and Clyde River, each resulting in a resident being killed in confrontations with police. The Ottawa Police Service, which is looking into both of those incidents, has not yet concluded its report from the initial Kinngait incident on Feb. 26, an officer told Nunavut News on Monday.

In the arrest on Monday, police were responding to a report of an intoxicated man who was allegedly fighting with other individuals. In the video, a man is seen staggering. The door to an approaching police truck flies open, sending the man sprawling to the ground. Eventually, five officers are subduing the man. Despite the numerical advantage, an officer on the ground to the left of the screen can be seen drawing his knee back and appears to deliver a blow to the suspect.

Prior to the RCMP’s news release, Kinngait Hamlet Coun. Claude Constantineau said that council had requested more information from the police force about the incident but he declined to comment further.

Numerous political officials at the municipal, territorial and federal levels have called for Nunavut RCMP to be equipped with body cameras.

 

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Derek Neary

Derek Neary has been reporting on developments in the North for 18 years. When he's not writing for Nunavut News, he's working on Northern News Services' special publications such as Opportunities North,...

18 replies on “Kinngait RCMP arrest caught on video raises alarm among residents; officer removed from community”

  1. RCMP in Nunavut are so awful behind closed doors, you can tell that some of them belittle us and think they can get away with anything. There are definitely some Amazing cops in Nunavut that do good for the Communities but it’s time for them to wear Body cams to protect everyone’s safety and see the truth if anything wrong Happens.

  2. We need Nunavut territorial police like other provinces such as (OPP) Ontario Provincial Police. Or kativik police force, etc.

    1. If you do ur research before writing this u would know that kativik police is 95% none inuk. SO tell me what would be different if Nunavut as there own police force but it mostly none inuk? what would change?

  3. I’ve seen an RCMP member here in Kugaaruk did similar incident, it was also caught on video. Another time I’ve seen an RCMP member roughed up a young person outside the airport terminal in Kugaaruk. Unfortunately I had no video to record. Nowadays it is unsafe to call for help from cops, because they just want to get promoted for Police Brutality.

  4. All the officers participated…not one said to the others, hey dial it back , no need to hit him with a truck door…then pile on him .
    All the arresting officers were complicit and all should be removed and charges pressed.
    We all should start recording every single time we see a rcmp stop anybody for anything . I am sure within one month there would be many clips showing a similar scene. Isn’t there a screening process to weed out these types? Shameful

  5. How do we go ahead and get the process of getting rid of cops in nunavut? Start with a petition?(Every single inuit would end up signing for sure) Time to get rid of rcmp in nunavut and pit that waste of money towards our own force like some places do. I quit calling cops for any reason because I always end up getting taken even though I didn’t do shit and I’m the one who would call. You can tell just from looking at most cops in the north they act all thug like or mobster like.

  6. Rcmp do not care about Natives!
    You think what they does in public is bad. Wait until you get to the station!
    What ever you do, don’t fight back! That’s assault against an officer.
    It’s sickening!! You want to murder a local? Especially a drunk! You get to walk !! especially if your white.. or white and religious!!
    It’s time to take a stand!! All lives Matter!!!

  7. I do find it interesting that we never see videos of how the RCMP are treated! I don’t think that he meant to hit him with the door, you can see what looks like his hands on the steering wheel. When he stopped on the ice looks like the vehicle slid a bit and drew door opened up. I do find it very interesting that someone taped someone that was obviously having trouble instead of helping him.

    1. after watching the video several times you can clearly see the door open and as the driver got closer he even opened the door more. he can barely stand up and they are twice the size of the man, the driver didnt need to knee the man also. the guy weighs no more than 140 pounds and the cops are about 100 pounds more than the man. they need to be charged with assault or the driver needs to be charged with aggravated assault. WATCH THE VIDEO SEVERAL TIMES!!!!

  8. It’s always the negative of what the RCMP have done posted. Never the good and there’s plenty of that as well as the bad. They shouldn’t be grouped as one entity when even the human race isn’t. Any profession, race, gender etc. Will have the power hungry

  9. And why do they not shoot someone where they just get injured? they just rather kill the person right away.

  10. Very disturbing. Are we changing policing terms from Freeze to Stop or I will run you down. Totally unnecessary behavior by all police involved in the situation. 5 Officers and a truck to take down one person who by the way was already taken down. This is a week after Mr. Floyd dies in the US by excessive force, are these officers not sensitive to what is happening in the world right now? This is clearly the act of 5 goons who need to be reprimanded.

  11. They’ll just move him to another community to do the same stuff. Happens all to often. Bad cops giving peace keepers a bad rep.

    That said, peace keepers, do your job, even if it means going against one of your own… when serving and protecting is the objective.

    Thank you officers for going into situations we citizens will not walk into.
    Kudos to the peace keepers.

  12. Perhaps it is time for the Minister of Justice to keep a register and vet all RCMP that are to be send to Nunavut. Any RCMP that is removed for whatever reason should not be posted to another Nunavut community.

  13. Hope charges are brought to all officers involved. This is totally unacceptable. Would I not be charged if I hit someone with not vehicle?

  14. Let’s petition easy as hell living with them. What if we all make the right choice and maybe we can petition with using nugov municipalities official I believe we can’t us Inuit take matter to our own government, todayS living is to be living again all odds now. Perhaps we didn’t not sigh or ever get implemented to work with rcmp.

  15. I look at this video, and I see the RCMP truck tire lock up and slide, hit a rut and change direction before impact.

    The guy “walking” and I use that term in its widest meaning possible since he was more closely “dancing or stumbling” rather than out for an evening walk. Was he drunk or high? Since I’ve only read about what drunks and those high as a kite on some drugs are capable of, I don’t know how many people it would take to subdue a person in that state.

    Was he “running” (and again, I use that word loosely) away from the scene of some incident? Where the police just driving by and saw him, or were they called because he’d just had a fight with someone?

    Every single one of us… without exception would DEMAND! ! ! that we be considered innocent until proven guilty, yet that standard is so rarely applied to those who put their lives and health on the line to protect us and keep the peace. While anyone who can hold an UNinformed opinion and in possession of partial facts is ready to declare themselves judge, jury, and executioner!

    If there was no reason to stop this perfectly sober citizen out for an evening walk who happen to slip on some ice and fall (quite comically), and the officers just wanted to rough someone up for entertainment because their shift was getting boring… they should all be fired, lose their pensions, and spent time in jail. Police worn body cameras would have provided more details of what was happening, hopefully all officers have them equipped and operating sooner rather than later.

    I’m guessing there is more to this story that the video alone is supplying.

    I will postpone judgment until the facts are in.

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