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    LONDON—British police said Thursday they have “reasonable grounds” to suspect that local authorities may have committed corporate manslaughter in a deadly high-rise fire in London.

    The Metropolitan Police force said it has officially informed the Royal Borough of Kensington and Cshelsea, which owns the Grenfell Tower public housing block, and the management group the Kensington and Chelsea Tenant Management Association that they are under suspicion.

    The news came in a letter from police sent to residents of the building. The letter said a senior representative of each body will be interviewed about the fire as part of the police investigation.

    Read more: 600 buildings in England have cladding similar to Grenfell Tower, Downing Street says

    Grenfell Tower fire a warning for Toronto on housing crisis: Micallef

    It will take months to identify all the victims of Grenfell Tower fire, U.K. detectives say

    The police force confirmed to The Associated Press that the letter is genuine, but stressed it does not mean a decision has been made on whether to charge any individual or organization.

    Police have said for weeks that their investigation will consider whether anyone should be charged with a crime. The force said Thursday it was “considering the full range of offences, from corporate manslaughter to regulatory breaches.”

    At least 80 people died June 14 when an early morning fire ripped through the west London high-rise. It was the deadliest fire in Britain in more than a century.

    Huge investigations by police, fire officials and others are underway to determine how a blaze that started with a refrigerator in one apartment got out of control so quickly in the 24-story building.

    Attention has focused the building’s new aluminum cladding, installed during a recent renovation, and authorities want answers fast because thousands of other buildings in the country could be affected.

    Angry residents want to know how building regulations that were meant to be among the world’s best could have failed so catastrophically. Many accuse officials in Kensington and Chelsea, one of London’s richest boroughs, of ignoring their safety concerns because the building was home to a largely immigrant and working-class population.


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    While volunteering at Kenya’s overcrowded Dadaab refugee camp in 2011, Gavin Armstrong found himself wondering how to create long-term solutions to the world’s problems.

    He said he saw 700,000 people in a camp designed for 100,000, witnessing malnutrition and human suffering on such a large scale that it “galvanized him,” and gave him the courage to start his company, Lucky Iron Fish.

    “We must address longer term issues to create change, so that’s where I got really energized around social enterprise,” he said.

    So far, the company has helped 500,000 people with iron deficiency around the world since it was launched in 2012.

    Armstrong’s fish is a reusable cast-iron gadget that can be boiled in water for 10 minutes a day to give the user a low dose of iron. It can be used for up to five years and can benefit entire families.

    This year, the 29-year-old Burlington native was named one of the “Six Core Principle” recipients of the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award, given annually to six humanitarians under the age of 30. Armstrong was also named one of Forbes’ Top 30 Under 30 in the social entrepreneur category, and won the EOY Social Entrepreneur special citation award.

    “Iron deficiency is the world’s largest nutritional challenge,” said Armstrong, who works out of his office in Guelph. “It impacts two billion people, one-third of the world suffers from it.”

    About 20 per cent of Canadians have iron deficiency, which is fairly low. But in some countries, like India, 80 per cent of the population suffers from it. Low iron can lead to fatigue, hair loss and brittle nails, but it can also cause limited cognitive development, lowered kidney and liver function, and death.

    Kristen Desautels has been using the fish for about three years, since she got pregnant with her daughter to improve her low energy levels.

    “Once I learned about it I thought it seemed like a great natural way of getting some increased iron instead of getting supplements,” said Desautels, who now sells the gadget at her Guelph restaurant.

    So far, Armstrong estimates that more than 100,000 iron fish have been sold around the world.

    Currently, the company is working on several projects, including a partnership with the Sahara Foundation to help people with HIV in India.

    People living with HIV can’t take iron supplements, Armstrong said, because they clash with their medication. By using the Lucky Iron Fish instead, they are exposed to a lower and “more gentle dose” of iron which he says is manageable.

    Last year, they started a program to send the fish to Indigenous communities in Canada, because Indigenous people have rates of iron deficiency two or three times higher than the average Canadian. So far, 5,000 fish have been sent through a buy-one-get-one initiative.

    “For every fish we sell we commit to donate one fish for free to a family around the world,” Armstrong said.

    Armstrong is also hopeful that they will soon be able to partner with a United Nations agency to run a pilot project.

    “This is really a women’s health issue,” he said, because impoverished women of reproductive age are more likely to be affected.

    Armstrong believes that companies engaged in social enterprise, like Lucky Iron Fish, are the future of business.

    “I feel that there’s sometimes a sense that having an impact organization is an added cost or an added burden and I don’t believe that,” he said. “I’d like to use Lucky Iron Fish as an example that not only being a social business is not an added cost, it’s a revenue opportunity. I think customers buy our product because they like what we're doing and believe in our mission.”


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    NEW YORK—Starbucks plans to shutter all its Teavana stores as it seeks to improve sales at its namesake coffee stores.

    The company said Thursday it will close all 379 Teavana locations over the coming year. It had acquired the mall-based chain in late 2012, with then-CEO Howard Schultz noting the huge potential for the tea market. Then this past April, the company said it was reviewing its options for the struggling chain. On Thursday, Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson noted declining foot traffic at malls.

    “We felt it was an appropriate time to take the decision and begin shutting down those stores,” he said.

    According to Teavana’s website, there are 16 Teavana locations in the GTA, including stores in high-profile locations such as the Eaton Centre and Vaughan Mills.

    The announcement came as Starbucks said global sales rose 4 per cent at established locations for the quarter ended July 2, fuelled by higher average spending per visit. But the frequency of customer visits was flat from a year ago.

    In the U.S., sales rose 5 per cent at established locations, also driven mostly by higher spending. The Seattle-based company cited “ongoing macro pressures impacting the retail and restaurant sectors” that have made it more cautious going into the next quarter.

    Competition in the U.S. restaurant industry has intensified, and Dunkin’ Donuts said earlier in the day that customer traffic fell again at its established U.S. locations. McDonald’s, meanwhile, has been promoting $1 sodas and $2 McCafé drinks in the U.S., a strategy the burger chain says helped bring in customers during the second quarter.

    Johnson said that promotion didn’t affect Starbucks, because the “value players” are competing in a different segment.

    In its Asia unit, Starbucks’ sales rose just 1 per cent at established locations during the three-month period. Starbucks has announced plans to acquire the remaining 50-per-cent stake of its East China joint venture that it does not already own, making it the operator of all Starbucks stores in mainland China.

    For the quarter, Starbucks Corp. earned $691.6 million (U.S.), or 47 cents per share. Excluding one-time items, it earned 55 cents per share, in line with Wall Street expectations. Total revenue was $5.66 billion, less than the $5.76 billion expected.

    Starbucks shares fell $1.25 to $58.25 in extended trading.


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    More than seven months after the death of his brother, Soleiman, Yusuf Faqiri and his family are still waiting for an answer to as to why he died.

    A coroner’s report, released to the family earlier this month, showed that Soleiman, 30, suffered over 50 injuries before dying in a segregation cell at the Central East Correctional Centre in Lindsay, Ontario, on Dec. 15, 2016—after an almost three-hour long confrontation with prison officers.

    According to the report, Soleiman had a bruised laceration on his forehead and multiple bruises and abrasions on his face, torso, and limbs—all the result of blunt impact trauma.

    The report also details the final moments of Soleiman’s life. Diagnosed with schizophrenia in 2005, Soleiman had been placed in a segregated cell while he waited for a bed at a mental health facility. The afternoon of his death, he was taken to the shower where he stayed for just under two hours. He resisted the efforts of guards to remove him by spraying them with water and throwing shampoo bottles.

    At 3 p.m., after he calmed down, guards escorted him back to his cell, his wrists and ankles cuffed. He spat on a guard and was hit in return. When he resisted going into his cell, guards used pepper spray on him, twice, and forced him to the ground. An alarm was called to get assistance, after which a large number of correctional officers entered Soleiman’s cell, according to the report.

    The prison guards took shifts and described the ordeal as exhausting. When witnesses saw that Soleiman wasn’t moving, medical personnel were called. Soleiman died at 3.45 p.m, 11 days after he was taken into custody in Lindsay, the report says.

    Some of the incident was recorded on video, which the coroner had access to but neither the family nor their lawyers have seen. Digital images of the scene after his death show several discarded items outside his cell, including a mattress, book, white and orange sheets, and garbage.

    The coroners report did not determine a cause of death, calling it “unascertained.”

    “The fact that the report doesn’t conclude what exactly, from a medical perspective, caused his body to stop functioning, doesn’t diminish the fact that…there was no other event prior to his death that could have been material,” said Edward Marrocco, the Faqiri family’s lawyer. “The only thing that happened to him before he became unresponsive was this beating.”

    “My brother was alive before this altercation,” said Faqiri. “He’s dead after.”

    Faqiri and his family met with the coroner to discuss the report, a common procedure, according to Dr. David Eden, Regional Supervising Coroner of inquests. “[Unascertained deaths] are not common, but there are times when it is the best finding to make,” said Eden. In this case, it was “based on the best information [they] have at the moment.”

    This was the second time the Faqiri family had any contact with the government. The first was a letter sent to them four months after Soleiman’s death, by Marie-France Lalonde, Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services. The letter offered “heartfelt” and “sincere” condolences, adding that the Ministry “takes the responsibility of individuals in our care very seriously.”

    “It is disgraceful the way my family has been treated,” said Faqiri, “To this day we have no explanation.”

    Because Soleiman’s death is still part of an ongoing police investigation, neither Eden nor the Ministry could provide comment. When asked if there would be an inquest Eden answered “certainly,” but only after consultation with the family and the conclusion of the investigation.

    According to the Ministry of the Attorney General, in Ontario, the investigation and laying of criminal charges is a function of the police.

    However, Marrocco says that, based on what he’s been told by police, the investigation by the Kawartha police has concluded and they have reached out to a Crown Attorney’s office “for an opinion on whether and which criminal charges to put forward.”

    Both Marrocco and Faqiri expect criminal charges to be laid, saying that the post-mortem report gives reasonable grounds for this. Kawartha Police said that they could not comment at this time.

    The Faqiri family were refugees from Afghanistan who moved to Canada in the early 1990s, when Soleiman was six years old. They have lived in the Ajax-Pickering area since 1998, where Soleiman is now buried. Yusuf said family was very important to Soleiman and he had a special relationship with everyone, spoke three languages and was pursuing an engineering degree.

    “We’re in 2017, and as Canadians, we have to really really be alarmed at what happened to Soleiman,” said Yusuf.


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    WASHINGTON—U.S. President Donald Trump and Republican leaders in Congress have agreed to kill an import-tax proposal that was strongly opposed by the Canadian government.

    “While we have debated the pro-growth benefits of border adjustability, we appreciate that there are many unknowns associated with it and have decided to set this policy aside in order to advance tax reform,” Trump’s treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell jointly announced in a news release on Thursday.

    Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland hailed the death of the tax.

    “Canada is pleased to see the border tax proposal dropped by the U.S. We know our people and economies prosper together,” she said on Twitter.

    The Conservatives’ Canada-U.S. relations critic, Randy Hoback, said they were “pleased” with the decision, having told U.S. lawmakers that the tax would have “damaging effects.”

    The tax, known as a border-adjustment tax, was pushed by Ryan but faced major resistance in the Senate, where it was thought to be dead on arrival had it been pursued. Trump had sent mixed signals, at one point claiming it would create jobs and at another saying it was “too complicated.”

    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke against the tax while addressing energy executives in Houston in March.

    “Recognizing, of course, how much the Canadian economy depends on close collaboration and integration with the American economy, anything that creates impediments at the border — extra tariffs or new taxes — is something we’re concerned with,” Trudeau said.

    At the World Economic Forum in New York in April, Finance Minister Bill Morneau said Canada believes the tax would create “an initial negative for both economies — and that the negative may be worse for the United States economy.”

    In broad terms, the tax would have been applied to imports — perhaps at a rate of 20 per cent — but not to exports. Retailers and other businesses reliant on imported goods had argued that the tax would increase costs for U.S. consumers.

    The announcement comes less than a month before the formal opening of negotiations on revisions to the North American Free Trade Agreement. The talks begin in Washington on Aug. 16.


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    Ontarians who need life-saving stem cell transplants for leukemia and other blood cancers will get them faster when new clinics in Toronto and London come into service, says Health Minister Eric Hoskins.

    The facilities at Princess Margaret Hospital and London Health Sciences centre will boost capacity by 440 transplants annually, 45 per cent more than the 958 transplants conducted last year.

    “We needed to do more,” Hoskins told a news conference at Princess Margaret on Thursday where doctors spoke of a “crisis” in getting bone marrow transplants done quickly enough.

    Frances Hillier, whose 18-year-old daughter Laura died while waiting for a transplant last year, spoke of the heartbreak of enduring additional chemotherapy treatments until her turn came for a transplant.

    “No patient must ever wait for this urgent treatment,” Hillier said, fighting back tears.

    That experience, chronicled in the Star, was the catalyst for action, Hoskins told reporters later.

    “It’s devastating,” added Hoskins, a physician. “That led me to action. That convinced me that we needed to aggressively address the challenge of capacity and the wait times that were, frankly, too long, at that time.”

    The waiting list has been cut in half to six weeks in the last year, which is within the target timeframe, ministry officials said.

    No dates have been set for the expansion at Princess Margaret and London, but planning and design work has begun. An expansion of stem cell transplants at Sunnybrook hospital, announced previously, is also in the works.

    Stem cell transplants are becoming more common thanks to advances in research, which make more people eligible, which, in turn, means demand is increasing.

    The procedure rebuilds a patient’s immune system using donated stem cells.

    “It can be effective for more and more people,” Hoskins said.

    The government has been sending urgent cases to the United States for transplants. Fifty-seven cases were approved last year, up from 24 the previous year.

    That course of action is still available, but the goal, with the expansions of treatment at Ontario hospitals, is to enable people to stay closer to home, Hoskins said.

    “No one wants to have to travel long distances to unfamiliar locations, to a foreign healthcare system.”


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    Deli restaurant owner Zane Caplansky has a message for Markham residents upset about the massive cow statue the city installed in their front yards: I’ll take it!

    “If you’ve got a beef with that statue, you’ve got a beef with me, because I’m all about beef,” he said Thursday, less than 48 hours after Charity Crescent homeowners met with Councillor Alan Ho to express distaste over the cow their street is named after.

    But the donor of the statue, Helen Roman-Barber, who is developing Markham’s Cathedraltown neighbourhood in honour of her family’s deep history in the area, has different plans.

    “Good luck, guy. Good luck, guy,” she said.

    Her father Stephen Roman’s Romandale Farm, the land on top of which Cathedraltown now rests, bought the famed cow named Brookview Tony Charity from a farm in Port Perry for a then-record $1.45 million in 1985.

    Charity was a nine-time all-Canadian or All-American show cow. Never defeated in her class, she was said to be the most productive milking cow in the world in the 1980s.

    Inside Roman-Barber’s office on King St. hang photos of Charity — and other family heirlooms.

    The tables are covered in magazines from her ancestors’ lineage in Slovakia.

    They’re filled with sticky tags that denote the inspiration for everything found in her Markham development from its massive Cathedral of the Transfiguration to its bells, splash pads, cafés, arboretum, heritage apple orchard and ancient tress.

    Roman-Barber plans to build Cathedraltown a traditional town square, too.

    Many of the streets are named after bulls and cows Roman owned. She glows about the calves her father gave to the Pope’s farm in Italy’s Castel Gonfolo.

    “This is not a normal piece of suburb,” she said, proudly.

    “The people who bought the original houses in Cathedraltown were all aware of all this history, because it was in the sales centre: the history of Romandale Farm, the street names, my dad. But people who have bought recently don’t have any of that.”

    She says residents don’t understand the planning that went into Charity’s statue.

    “When people cite safety concerns, that’s been gone into so in depth; there are no safety concerns,” Roman-Barber said. “The city also had to approve what we did to prove it was safe. It was a double tier of approvals.”

    Roman-Barber commissioned artist Ron Baird to recreate Charity in stainless steel in honour of her father.

    Even the direction the statue is facing was designed so that the cow would overlook the 30-year-old trees Roman-Barber had planted in the parquet (instead of planting new trees) to the dome of the Slovak Catholic cathedral.

    Residents have asked Ho to look to move Charity to a nearby pond, where she could still face the cathedral.

    He says council couldn’t persuade Roman-Barber to put the piece elsewhere during the planning process.

    Caplansky won’t give up hope. On Thursday, he met with Luke Robertson, one of Mayor John Tory’s staff, to make clear his interest in the statue for his Yorkville location.

    He says it could be a beacon for beef lovers and an attraction the city would fall in love with.

    “Are you kidding? It’s beautiful. I think the cow, itself, is stunning,” he said.

    Bob Forhan, Roman-Barber’s land-use planning consultant, says Caplansky and residents shouldn’t get their hopes up; Charity isn’t moving.

    “Charity was planned to be in her crescent. It’s called Charity Crescent, and that was 20 years ago,” he said. “There’s no way she’s going to go anywhere else, because she’s in her crescent where she belongs. That was where she was farmed.”

    “To us, history is important, the most important,” Roman-Barber said.


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    Waterloo Regional Police has been called in by Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders to investigate the circumstances surrounding the assault of Black Whitby teen Dafonte Miller after an off-duty Toronto Police officer was charged.

    That request by Saunders, announced at a police board meeting on Thursday, comes amid criticism of both Toronto and Durham Police for not reporting Miller’s injuries to the police watchdog responsible for investigating cases of serious injury when police officers are involved.

    That criticism caused the meeting to be temporarily halted when journalist and Black liberation activist Desmond Cole demanded to speak to the case publicly before being escorted out of the building, fined and warned not to return.

    “As chief of police it is my responsibility to ensure that transparency and trust are at the foremost of everything we do as a service,” Saunders said at the start of a public meeting, saying Waterloo Chief Bryan Larkin has agreed to take carriage of the report.

    Last week, Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) charged Toronto police Const. Michael Theriault and his brother, civilian Christian Theriault, with aggravated assault, assault with a weapon, and public mischief in Miller’s December 2016 beating.

    Miller was punched, kicked and hit repeatedly in the face with a metal pipe, his lawyer Julian Falconer said. One of his eyes will have to be surgically removed, Falconer added. When Durham Police arrived on scene, it was Miller who was arrested (All charges have since been dropped).

    The SIU only learned of the incident when Falconer contacted them in April.

    “This case is complicated and there have been serious allegations made which everyone is taking extremely seriously, especially members of the Toronto Police Services Board,” board chair Andy Pringle said Thursday, adding the board supports the chief’s decision to seek an outside force to conduct a follow-up investigation.

    “The chief has advised the board that due to the fact that there are two very different versions of this case in the public domain, it is important to take this opportunity to have another agency that is independent and separate to conduct the section 11 investigation.”

    An internal report by a police service to the police board investigating matters arising from an SIU investigation — referred to as a section 11 for the provincial law it is required under — will look at “procedures, policies and conduct in the handling of this case,” Pringle said.

    Saunders said members of his professional standards unit determined that the case did not meet the threshold to report to the SIU with the information they had “at that time.”

    “Many months later, a very different version of the events of Dec. 28 was presented to the SIU,” Saunders said.

    The SIU’s website states that in the case of off-duty officers, they typically don’t investigate unless the officer identified themselves or displayed police equipment during an incident.

    Saunder’s defence of why the incident was not reported to the SIU is contradicted by the account detailed to the Star by Miller’s lawyer, who said Michael Theriault twice identified himself as an officer — to Miller and his friends as they encountered him outside the Whitby home and on a 9-1-1 call.

    The Theriaults’ father, John Theriault, is a long-time detective in the Toronto Police professional standards unit.

    Durham Police and its board have said very little publicly about the case.

    Roger Anderson, chair of the Durham Police Services Board was not available to comment on the case Thursday, his staff told the Star.

    Durham police did not respond to multiple requests for an interview with Durham Police Chief Paul Martin on Thursday. All questions were referred to spokesperson David Selby, who did not respond to the Star’s numerous attempts to contact him Thursday.

    When reached by the Star last week, Selby said that multiple Durham officers were at the scene of Miller’s alleged beating.

    “We conducted an investigation and interviewed multiple people. Our investigation resulted in only one person being charged — the injured male party,” Selby said in an email.

    It is the responsibility of the police service that employs the officer involved in an incident to contact the SIU, Selby added.

    The responsibility to contact the SIU should lie with whichever police force is first notified of an incident, said former SIU director Howard Morton.

    “They might decide to contact the police service that the officer is a member of, to have them contact the SIU, but I was always of the view that, because (police) have to contact us right away, then it’s whatever police service is (initially) notified,” Morton added.

    Mayor John Tory said the report from Waterloo Police will be made public.

    “I think what we have to do is let the Waterloo Police Service do their job. There’s been no suggestion that anybody associated with that police service had any involvement in this or has any prejudice going in,” Tory told reporters. “I trust they will do their job as police officers do, in an honest and thorough manner.”

    After briefly moving on to other business, the meeting was disrupted by Cole, who demanded a forum to speak to the Miller case, noting it was not made part of the public agenda.

    Pringle earlier warned no disruptions would be tolerated, alluding to previous meetings where Cole and members of Black Lives Matter question the board on their oversight of police shootings and racial profiling.

    As Cole continued to speak, board members, including Tory, walked out of the room.

    Cole was eventually escorted outside by a group of officers, with one on each arm, and charged under the Trespass to Property Act for failing to leave when directed. The provincial offence comes with a $65 fine.

    Speaking to reporters outside, Cole said the way Miller was treated “is emblematic to us as Black people about how the system always turns us into the perpetrator even when we are the victim.”

    “As a Black person who knows that this can happen to us and then knows that after it’s revealed that it happened that they will continue to cover it up, I’m terrified,” Cole said. “And I have to act the way that I’m acting now because sitting here calmly and quietly is not going to save my life and it’s not going to save the lives of Black people.”


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    WASHINGTON—Sean Spicer endured all manner of humiliation as Donald Trump’s press secretary. But when Anthony Scaramucci was hired as his boss, he resigned the same day.

    We now have a better idea about why.

    Scaramucci, the incoming White House communications director, insulted two of his senior administration colleagues in a shockingly vulgar Wednesday phone call to a journalist from the New Yorker magazine.

    Of Reince Priebus, the embattled chief of staff he is trying to embarrass into resigning, Scaramucci said: “Reince is a f---ing paranoid schizophrenic, a paranoiac.”

    Of Steve Bannon, the chief strategist, Scaramucci said: “I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own c--k.”

    He also accused Priebus of having “c--k-blocked” him from the administration for months, said he wanted to “f---ing kill all the leakers” disclosing information to journalists, and said he had to end the call to try to inflame Priebus via Twitter.

    “Gotta start tweeting some s--- to make this guy crazy,” he told the journalist, Ryan Lizza.

    Read the latest news on U.S. President Donald Trump

    Trump’s team of political novices is known for its vicious infighting, but its battles are usually conducted behind the scenes and via anonymous quotes. There is no precedent for the president’s chief communicator lambasting his colleagues on the record.

    “Did you read that story? This guy’s f---ing out of his mind,” said Rick Tyler, former communications chief for Republican Sen. Ted Cruz and now an MSNBC analyst.

    Scaramucci is a well-dressed, well-coiffed Wall Street financier with no experience in government but a Trump-impressing proficiency in combat on cable-television. His good-natured public debut on Friday was appraised by numerous U.S. reporters as “smooth” and “slick.”

    Since then, however, he has so frequently raised questions about his basic competence that a media writer for the Washington Post described him as a “walking, talking, leak-busting disaster.”

    Scaramucci promised Thursday to tone down his vocabulary, but he offered no apologies.

    “I sometimes use colorful language. I will refrain in this arena but not give up the passionate fight for @realDonaldTrump’s agenda,” he said on Twitter.

    He had a bizarre 24 hours even before the New Yorker published its account of the interview on Thursday afternoon. After he told Lizza he was going on Twitter to make Priebus “crazy,” he tweeted that he was going to contact the FBI “in light of the leak of my financial disclosure info which is a felony.”

    In fact, no leak had occurred; the disclosure form was public information available upon request. But Scaramucci told the New Yorker that he had indeed “called the FBI and the Department of Justice,” a remarkable breach of the traditional separation between the White House and justice officials.

    He also tagged Priebus in the tweet — clearly suggesting he thought Priebus was the leaker. But when journalists correctly reported that this was the suggestion, he deleted the tweet and said their inference was wrong.

    Then, on Thursday morning, he called in to a live CNN program to offer a third story. It went as follows: he was not suggesting Priebus was the leaker, but since journalists assumed he was suggesting this, Priebus probably was a leaker.

    “So if Reince wants to explain that he’s not a leaker, let him do that,” he said.

    It is theoretically possible that Scaramucci did not expect his comments to the New Yorker to be published. A reporter for the Daily Beast said he is known to be confused about conversational conventions like “on background” and “off the record.”

    This was not even the first strange phone conversation of Scaramucci’s six-day-old tenure. On Tuesday, he told Politico that he was firing assistant press secretary Michael Short, a Priebus ally he had not personally informed.

    Then, when Short told reporters that he hadn’t heard anything, Scaramucci falsely complained to reporters that the news had been leaked.

    “The fact that you guys know about it before he does really upsets me as a human being and as a Roman Catholic. I should have the opportunity if I have to let somebody go to let the person go in a very humane, dignified way,” he said. “Because he probably has a family, right?”

    Christina Reynolds, former director of media affairs for Barack Obama’s White House and now senior vice-president at the Global Strategy Group, said administrations are “most effective when the staff is driving the president’s message, not nursing petty grudges and attacking each other.”

    “This rant doesn’t help them get a health care bill or focus on American heroes — so it’s a counterproductive start,” she said in an email.


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    Residents of a Markham neighbourhood want a towering cow sculpture installed 10 days ago by the city to just moooove on.

    The unhappy people gathered Tuesday night to give local councillor Alan Ho, who voted last year to approve the chrome statue, a piece of their collective mind.

    Ho was in huge backtrack mode as resident after resident slammed him for supporting the statue in a large parkette on Charity Cres. in the Cathedraltown neighbourhood. He urged them to gather a petition opposing the artwork and to head to council at its first meeting in September to tell elected officials exactly what they think.

    The cow, called Charity, Perpetuation of Perfection, was apparently a prize-winning milker for the donor and the statue is dubbed “Brookview Tony Charity.”

    Under intense questioning from residents at the site of the statue, Ho admitted the donation of the statue was valued at $1.2 million.

    But he insisted the donation cost the City of Markham and taxpayers nothing.

    Residents were udderly unimpressed.

    Tammy Armes, a member of the Cathedraltown Ratepayers Association, said the sculpture caught everyone by surprise.

    “This is really a shock for us; it’s not a small cow. It does not belong in this community,” Armes said.

    Danny Da Silva, who lives right in the sightline of the sculpture, was blunt in his assessment of it: “I hate it. I don’t like to be forced to look at this, but I have to unless I don’t want to come out of my house anymore.

    “I think it’s actually kind of disturbing looking. I come from a Christian background and this is actually one of the worst things you can do, is to raise a calf; it’s facing the cathedral. Who’s going to want to buy the house, there’s very little to admire,” he added.

    Da Silva suggested it be moved to another location, like the carousel in downtown Markham.

    Ho said he believed the statue belonged in another location but that the donor insisted on the current location and council agreed. He said if the statue does get moved it’s not clear whether the donor or the city will have to pay the cost.

    Markham Economist & Sun


    Markham residents have beef with huge cow sculptureMarkham residents have beef with huge cow sculpture

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    It’s a celebration, this conference on education, for which some 2,700 Indigenous people from around the world have gathered in Toronto.

    You might notice them around the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Or, you might not.

    “There’s no ‘Made on Reserve’ stamp on our forehead,” says Dr. Verna Billy-Minnabarriet, a B.C. educator and vice-president of the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology.

    Every one of the leading Indigenous educators from B.C., Hawaii, Australia and New Zealand I spoke to this week agreed: it’s insulting to say to an Indigenous person, “But you don’t look native.”

    While this emerged as a footnote in an hours-long rich group discussion on how these geographically disparate groups were brought together by a common history, it tapped into a larger issue that inextricably links them together.

    “Colonization is a common cancer that afflicted Indigenous people across the world,” said Bob Morgan, a professor at the University of Newcastle, Australia.

    It’s easy to see how being colonized by the same people has resulted in some of the same outcomes — higher poverty, lower health indicators, suicide crises, disproportionate rates of incarceration and removal of children from families. It has also given them a common language with which to mobilize, to exchange ideas.

    But riddle me this. How do people with no known connections for centuries all interpret land the same way?

    “In my culture, we don’t own land. Land is a gift. And our job is to take care of that land and to ensure that that land is there for those who come behind,” says Billy-Minnabarriet. “Whereas in dominant society land is a commodity.”

    “Our largest relationship is to the land,” said Dr. Noe Noe Wong-Wilson, a native, or Kanaka Maoli, from Hawaii. “It’s not a commodity. It’s in essence an inseparable part of ourselves. If you remove a native from the land, they struggle to survive physically, spiritually, economically.”

    “Our connectedness is to country and to our waters and land,” says Peter Buckskin, professor at the University of South Australia.

    The soreness about having your identity doubted is at least partly linked to this connectedness to land.

    When you tell a native person they don’t look native, not only are you saying they don’t fit your stereotype of them, you’re also suggesting they are not entitled to their own land.

    At one time, to qualify for Hawaiian land, you had to have 50 per cent native blood. Given all the intermingling of cultures, this year, the state legislature changed the blood quantum required to inherit native lands to 1/32.

    This blood logic or the idea of measurable blood purity is a colonial construct historically used to override traditional norms that defined Indigeneity. It was a tool to determine ineligibility for benefits and rights reserved for white people. Now it’s used to reduce Indigenous populations by recognizing fewer of them, to cut off access to land and undermine Indigenous sovereignty.

    The solidarity of this group also springs from the struggle to be allowed to live as Indigenous people.

    “Our greatest challenge is to live as Maori,” said Bentham Othia, deputy chair of the Waikato Endowed Colleges Trust in New Zealand. “The second challenge is the survival of Maori as a people.”

    “We are not asking for permission,” said Morgan. “We assert our fundamental right and freedom to be Indigenous. That is our basic human right before all else.”

    “The sad thing is modern society doesn’t even work for non-Indigenous people,” he says. “So why do we assume it’s going to work for Indigenous people?

    “And why is it that in every city I’ve visited internationally, there’s an increasing number of people living in poverty that live on the streets that are homeless that are marginalized. What type of society allows that to happen?

    “In the modern world I’m shattered to see that young people are turning away from life and choosing death . . . so what type of society allows that to happen to their young?”

    The natives also found a commonality in the misconceptions and stereotypes.

    “We’re not happy natives in hula skirts dancing seductively around coconut palms,” says Wong-Wilson.

    “We’re seen as dysfunctional,” says Buckskin. “All we’re asking for is respect and a sense of place at the table. But that’s hard to continue that agenda when you continually come from a deficit model. There’s a lack of trust that Aboriginal people can solve our own problems.”

    “One thing that’s consistent is the whole attitude of being less than,” says B.C.’s Billy-Minnabarriet. “You don’t have good education, you can’t keep a good job, you don’t, you don’t, you don’t. That stereotype is consistent in the fabric of everything we do.”

    “We will never surrender to injustice,” says Morgan. “The day we do, all that our forefathers fought for will mean nothing.”

    It is a celebration of resilience, this conference.

    “If there’s one thing that we can celebrate it is that we’ve survived,” says Morgan. “That is our greatest achievement. We always have to see ourselves as people that are of this land . . . And we’re not going away.”

    Shree Paradkar tackles issues of race and gender. You can follow her @shreeparadkar


    When you tell a native person they don't look native, you're suggesting they're not entitled to their land: ParadkarWhen you tell a native person they don't look native, you're suggesting they're not entitled to their land: Paradkar

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    At the conclusion of the coroner’s inquest testimony Wednesday of the officers who were at the scene of the police shooting death of Michael MacIsaac, his family’s demand for answers remained unchanged.

    MacIsaac, 47, was shot dead on an Ajax street on Dec. 2, 2013 by Durham region police Const. Brian Taylor, who said a naked MacIsaac was advancing on him with a metal table leg. Taylor was cleared of criminal wrongdoing by Ontario’s police watchdog, the Special Investigations Unit.

    On Tuesday, Const. Jeffrey Williams, who was parked behind Taylor on Dring St. that day, said he could not recall if MacIsaac said anything to Taylor before being shot, but that he was “marching” toward the police cruisers. Williams testified he did hear Taylor say something to MacIsaac, however.

    “I don’t know what he said, I know it was his voice, and just after I heard two pops,” Williams testified.

    Then on Wednesday, Const. Mark Brown, a designated “mental health response officer” who was parked behind Williams, testified he heard Taylor identify the men as police officers and that he heard MacIsaac shouting.

    “I did hear him yell something, but didn’t hear what he actually yelled,” Brown testified, saying MacIsaac was “running slightly faster than a jog” down a driveway toward police and holding the table leg like a baseball bat.

    Taylor himself testified last week that he remembered issuing and hearing the police challenge — “Police. Don’t move.” And he testified that MacIsaac was saying to him, “Come on, come on.”

    It has also been previously pointed out at the inquest that Taylor cannot be heard shouting commands and MacIsaac cannot be heard saying anything on a 911 call that was placed by a civilian at the scene of the shooting and that the call was analyzed by a forensic scientist for the family, who found no breaks or alterations in the recording. Taylor has speculated that the call dropped and did not capture everything that was said.

    “I think none of their stories match,” MacIsaac’s sister, Joanne, told reporters Wednesday. “I’d like to say it’s surprising that the SIU didn’t have a lot more questions with this, but it seems to be the way the SIU handles these situations.”

    The SIU does not comment on probes that are the subject of a coroner’s inquest, and it has also never said in the past if it listened to, or even obtained, the 911 call.

    Wednesday was an especially emotional day for the MacIsaac family, sitting in the front rows of the courtroom. Some family members, overcome by emotion, left during parts of Brown’s testimony.

    Like Williams the day before him, Brown testified that his focus after the shooting was on helping MacIsaac. He said that once MacIsaac fell to the ground, he removed the table leg while the other officers remained with their guns drawn.

    “I took control of Mr. MacIsaac, I took hold of his hands and he was actively resisting and not listening,” Brown testified, saying he was trying to administer first aid along with Williams. He said the only word from MacIsaac that he could make out was “pain.”

    The term “actively resisting” sparked a wave of sobbing from the MacIsaac family.

    “Michael was met with such a lack of compassion, empathy and caring by these three men, right after he was shot,” Joanne MacIsaac told reporters. “When he’s naked, and cold and on the ground and you’re pushing in on his abdomen after he’s been shot, to use the phrase that he was still ‘actively resisting,’ my God, what is the matter with these people? What is the matter with each of them?”

    Williams testified Tuesday that he retrieved first aid kits from the police vehicles and attempted to speak to MacIsaac, who was yelling but was incomprehensible.

    “At that point it was my job to save his life,” Williams said. “He did eventually start speaking to me, he told me his name was Michael. I told him ‘I’m trying to help you, we have help on the way’ . . . I asked him what had happened. He told me he was hot.”

    Coroner’s counsel Troy Harrison asked how long it took for an ambulance to arrive.

    “I couldn’t tell you,” Williams said. “It was upsetting and chaotic.”

    Williams said that when the ambulance did arrive, he jumped in the driver’s seat, offering to drive to the hospital so that the two paramedics could focus on MacIsaac. But one of his superiors at the scene had another officer drive and ordered Williams back to the police division because of his involvement in the shooting.

    Under cross-examination by Anita Szigeti, lawyer for the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health’s Empowerment Council, it was pointed out to Williams that the first time an officer tried to calm MacIsaac down by asking his name and talking about help was after he had already been shot.

    On Wednesday, Szigeti questioned Brown on his knowledge of mental health issues and individuals in crisis, suggesting he has stereotyped or negative perceptions of persons with mental health issues, which he denied.

    The officer testified earlier that he received a 40-hour training course in either 2005 or 2006 to be designated a mental health response officer, which consisted largely of meeting the various agencies that can help individuals in crisis. He said he hasn’t taken any refresher courses since then.

    Szigeti listed some of the observations Brown made to the SIU as to why he believed MacIsaac may have mental health issues, including glossy eyes and speaking gibberish.

    “(These observations) could also be consistent with being shot, though,” she said.

    After her cross-examination, Szigeti turned and quietly apologized to the MacIsaac family.

    The inquest continues.


    ‘My God, what is the matter with these people?’ asks dead man’s sister after police testify‘My God, what is the matter with these people?’ asks dead man’s sister after police testify‘My God, what is the matter with these people?’ asks dead man’s sister after police testify‘My God, what is the matter with these people?’ asks dead man’s sister after police testify

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    Two people are dead and three injured, including a child, following a five-vehicle collision in Georgina on Thursday.

    The crash happened a few minutes before noon on Hwy. 48, north of Old Homestead Rd.

    Ontario Provincial Police Sgt. Kerry Schmidt said the collision involved three transport trucks, a commercial vehicle and a passenger vehicle.

    York Region communications supervisor Kylie-Anne Doerner said two people were found without vital signs and pronounced dead at the scene.

    Schmidt said one of the victims was in the passenger vehicle and the other victim was in the commercial vehicle.

    Ornge communications officer Rachel Scott said they airlifted a child, 10, ith serious injuries to the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.

    The O.P.P.’s Schmidt confirmed the child is now in stable condition.

    Ornge’s Scott said another patient who was trapped in a vehicle has been airlifted to Sunnybrook Hospital with serious, but not life-threatening, injuries.

    A third person was taken to hospital with minor injuries, Schmidt said. He said this was a “devastating crash” that “crumpled these cars unrecognizably.” The momentum of the trucks colliding with the vehicles caused catastrophic damage, he explained.

    OPP are investigating and believe some of the vehicles involved were stopped while traveling northbound on the highway, and they were hit from behind by vehicles travelling at a much higher speed, Schmidt said.

    All lanes are closed on Hwy. 48 between Old Homestead Rd. and High St.

    Just before 8 p.m. on Thursday, Schmidt tweeted that the road would reopen at midnight.


    Two dead, one child in serious condition in Hwy. 48 crashTwo dead, one child in serious condition in Hwy. 48 crash

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    LONDON—British police said Thursday they have “reasonable grounds” to suspect that local authorities may have committed corporate manslaughter in a deadly high-rise fire in London.

    The Metropolitan Police force said it has officially informed the Royal Borough of Kensington and Cshelsea, which owns the Grenfell Tower public housing block, and the management group the Kensington and Chelsea Tenant Management Association that they are under suspicion.

    The news came in a letter from police sent to residents of the building. The letter said a senior representative of each body will be interviewed about the fire as part of the police investigation.

    Read more: 600 buildings in England have cladding similar to Grenfell Tower, Downing Street says

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    The police force confirmed to The Associated Press that the letter is genuine, but stressed it does not mean a decision has been made on whether to charge any individual or organization.

    Police have said for weeks that their investigation will consider whether anyone should be charged with a crime. The force said Thursday it was “considering the full range of offences, from corporate manslaughter to regulatory breaches.”

    At least 80 people died June 14 when an early morning fire ripped through the west London high-rise. It was the deadliest fire in Britain in more than a century.

    Huge investigations by police, fire officials and others are underway to determine how a blaze that started with a refrigerator in one apartment got out of control so quickly in the 24-story building.

    Attention has focused the building’s new aluminum cladding, installed during a recent renovation, and authorities want answers fast because thousands of other buildings in the country could be affected.

    Angry residents want to know how building regulations that were meant to be among the world’s best could have failed so catastrophically. Many accuse officials in Kensington and Chelsea, one of London’s richest boroughs, of ignoring their safety concerns because the building was home to a largely immigrant and working-class population.


    Corporate manslaughter charges possible in U.K. tower fire, police sayCorporate manslaughter charges possible in U.K. tower fire, police say

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    WASHINGTON—U.S. President Donald Trump and Republican leaders in Congress have agreed to kill an import-tax proposal that was strongly opposed by the Canadian government.

    “While we have debated the pro-growth benefits of border adjustability, we appreciate that there are many unknowns associated with it and have decided to set this policy aside in order to advance tax reform,” Trump’s treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell jointly announced in a news release on Thursday.

    Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland hailed the death of the tax.

    “Canada is pleased to see the border tax proposal dropped by the U.S. We know our people and economies prosper together,” she said on Twitter.

    The Conservatives’ Canada-U.S. relations critic, Randy Hoback, said they were “pleased” with the decision, having told U.S. lawmakers that the tax would have “damaging effects.”

    The tax, known as a border-adjustment tax, was pushed by Ryan but faced major resistance in the Senate, where it was thought to be dead on arrival had it been pursued. Trump had sent mixed signals, at one point claiming it would create jobs and at another saying it was “too complicated.”

    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke against the tax while addressing energy executives in Houston in March.

    “Recognizing, of course, how much the Canadian economy depends on close collaboration and integration with the American economy, anything that creates impediments at the border — extra tariffs or new taxes — is something we’re concerned with,” Trudeau said.

    At the World Economic Forum in New York in April, Finance Minister Bill Morneau said Canada believes the tax would create “an initial negative for both economies — and that the negative may be worse for the United States economy.”

    In broad terms, the tax would have been applied to imports — perhaps at a rate of 20 per cent — but not to exports. Retailers and other businesses reliant on imported goods had argued that the tax would increase costs for U.S. consumers.

    The announcement comes less than a month before the formal opening of negotiations on revisions to the North American Free Trade Agreement. The talks begin in Washington on Aug. 16.


    Trump, Republicans kill border tax planTrump, Republicans kill border tax plan

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    There is no doubt that major-league umpires can serve as a negative influence on the game of baseball with bad judgment and fits of anger. There are times to blame players for their ejections. and time to blame umpires.

    The emotional Marcus Stroman was ejected in the fifth inning of the Jays’ 8-4 comeback win over Oakland on Thursday, and this one was on home-plate umpire Will Little.

    Nobody is paying to see the umpire call balls and strikes. I remember the Expos’ first homestand of the 1992 season, when the crowd came to see Dennis Martinez, who had pitched a perfect game in Los Angeles the summer before. Houston’s Craig Biggio led off the game with an infield single and stole second. On the second pitch to Steve Finley, Martinez stared in at umpire Larry Vanover, who removed his mask, stepped out in front of the plate and ejected Martinez. Vanover wasn’t going to be shown up by the pitcher.

    There was a little more involved at the Rogers Centre on Thursday, but the sentiment about letting the players be the show still should rule. But after manager John Gibbons sacrificed himself to save his pitcher by arguing on behalf of Stroman, Little decided he was the show and pulled off his mask, baiting Stroman, who said something and was ejected. Then it was catcher Russ Martin.

    “Stroman made a sound, I’m not exactly sure what was said or not,” Martin said after the game. “Then he probably whispered something . . . probably thought it was there, thought it was a good pitch. I turned around and said ‘You didn’t have to throw him out right there.’ I probably threw an F-bomb in there, just one, not multiple. But he took his mask off and looked like he was ready to do something.”

    The tension started building in the first inning. With runners on first and second, Stroman and Martin thought they had Khris Davis struck out on a 1-2 pitch, but Little called ball two. Stroman posed at the end of his delivery, as he often does in all his glorious flamboyance, and stared in. Martin, without turning his head, chirped Little respectfully. Davis ended up walking to load the bases.

    Thus began the three-run first that put the Jays in a hole. Ryon Healy chopped a slow grounder to shortstop for the first run and Maxwell sliced a single to centre field to drive in two more.

    Then it became the Jays’ batters questioning Little’s strike zone as hitter after hitter turned quizzically to glance back as left-hander Shaun Manaea mowed 10 men down in order.

    “It’s frustrating when the umpire’s kind of tight back there,” Martin shrugged. “It’s part of the game. You try to get through it. But I think frustration from the umpire, from myself, from Stro, just kind of led up to whatever happened.”

    Stroman lasted 4 2/3 innings, throwing 100 pitches that included just 48 strikes, uncharacteristic for the right-hander. Much of that could be blamed on the judgment of the home plate umpire. Stroman was not willing to talk about what he thought of Little’s game, but he was unapologetic about the emotion that he takes with him to the mound.

    “I’m an emotional guy,” Stroman said. “I’m going to continue to be myself regardless of who doesn’t like it, who likes it. I’m always going to be myself, regardless. I’m emotional, that’s how I pitch. That’s what I pride myself on. That’s what allows me to be my best out there and that’s how it’s going to continue to be, day in and day out. So, if you don’t like it, it’s OK.

    “When you come up (to the majors) sometimes, it’s hard to be yourself, being a young guy. Now I feel like I’m settled in. I can completely be myself. There’s no reason to hold back. None of it is ill-natured by any means. It’s things that I need to do, talk to myself to get myself in the moment, to get myself up for a particular pitch. I’m not going to change going forward. Nobody can sway that.”

    Stroman doesn’t believe anybody should worry about how he reacts. He has a chip on his shoulder and that emotion and will to succeed is what fuels him. But when he was ejected, there was little doubt that if the other umpires, Martin, and especially interim manager DeMarlo Hale had not stepped in, Stroman would have made significant physical contact with Little. The results for the talented, fiery 26-year-old could have been much worse.

    Stroman doesn’t need to reel in those emotions, but he needs to better channel them. He is the Stro Show and fans love it and he does fuel himself. Little was horrible Thursday afternoon, but the consequences could have been worse for Stroman.

    “Any time an umpire kind of just steps towards you and takes his mask off, it’s never a good sign,” said Martin, the voice of reason. “It’s like he was asking for, or instigating, almost. I didn’t feel like at that moment it was the proper call. It didn’t feel like it was necessary. There wasn’t any drama at that moment. He kind of created the drama there. It’s definitely frustrating when the umpires get in the way.

    “The fans got into it and kind of added fuel to the fire, but that’s the nature of the game. That’s why we like having human umpires back there. It would be a little bit different if there was just an electronic strike zone.”


    Umpire became the show before Jays’ rally: GriffinUmpire became the show before Jays’ rally: Griffin

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    Waterloo Regional Police has been called in by Toronto police Chief Mark Saunders to investigate the circumstances surrounding the assault of Black Whitby teen Dafonte Miller after an off-duty Toronto Police officer was charged.

    That request by Saunders, announced at a police board meeting on Thursday, comes amid criticism of both Toronto and Durham Police for not reporting Miller’s injuries to the police watchdog responsible for investigating cases of serious injury when police officers are involved.

    That criticism caused the meeting to be temporarily halted when journalist and Black activist Desmond Cole demanded to speak to the case publicly before being escorted out of the building, fined and warned not to return.

    “As chief of police, it is my responsibility to ensure that transparency and trust are at the foremost of everything we do as a service,” Saunders said at the start of a public meeting, saying Waterloo Chief Bryan Larkin has agreed to take carriage of the report.

    Last week, Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) charged Toronto police Const. Michael Theriault and his brother, civilian Christian Theriault, with aggravated assault, assault with a weapon, and public mischief in Miller’s beating last December.

    Miller was punched, kicked and hit repeatedly in the face with a metal pipe, says his lawyer, Julian Falconer. One of Miller’s eyes will have to be surgically removed, Falconer added. When Durham Police arrived on scene, it was Miller who was arrested. (All charges have since been dropped.)

    The SIU learned of the incident only when Falconer contacted the panel in April.

    “This case is complicated and there have been serious allegations made, which everyone is taking extremely seriously, especially members of the Toronto Police Services Board,” board chair Andy Pringle said Thursday. He added that the board supports the chief’s decision to seek an outside force to conduct a followup investigation.

    “The chief has advised the board that due to the fact that there are two very different versions of this case in the public domain, it is important to take this opportunity to have another agency that is independent and separate to conduct the Section 11 investigation.”

    An internal report by a police service to the police board investigating matters arising from an SIU investigation — referred to as a Section 11 for the provincial law it that requires it — will look at “procedures, policies and conduct in the handling of this case,” Pringle said.

    Saunders said members of his professional standards unit determined that the case did not meet the threshold to report to the SIU with the information they had “at that time.”

    “Many months later, a very different version of the events of Dec. 28 was presented to the SIU,” Saunders said.

    The SIU’s website states that in the case of an off-duty officer, it typically don’t investigate unless the officer identified themselves, or displayed police equipment during an incident.

    Saunders’ defence of why the incident was not reported to the SIU is contradicted by the account detailed to the Star by Miller’s lawyer, who said Michael Theriault twice identified himself as an officer — to Miller and his friends as they encountered him outside the Whitby home and on a 911 call.

    The Theriaults’ father, John Theriault, is a longtime detective in the Toronto police professional standards unit, Falconer said.

    Durham Police and its board have said very little publicly about the case.

    Roger Anderson, chair of the Durham Police Services Board, was not available to comment on the case Thursday, his staff told the Star.

    Durham police did not respond to multiple requests for an interview with Durham Police Chief Paul Martin on Thursday. All questions were referred to spokesperson David Selby, who repeated an earlier statement to the Star Thursday night that the responsibility to report to the SIU lay solely with Toronto police.

    “We are not at liberty to discuss any details related to the incident as there are active charges before the court,” Selby said in an email.

    When reached by the Star last week, Selby said that multiple Durham officers were at the scene of Miller’s alleged beating.

    “We conducted an investigation and interviewed multiple people. Our investigation resulted in only one person being charged — the injured male party,” Selby said in an email.

    The responsibility to contact the SIU should lie with whichever police force is first notified of an incident, said former SIU director Howard Morton.

    “They might decide to contact the police service that the officer is a member of, to have them contact the SIU, but I was always of the view that, because (police) have to contact us right away, then it’s whatever police service is (initially) notified,” Morton added.

    Mayor John Tory said the report from Waterloo Police will be made public.

    “I think what we have to do is let the Waterloo Police Service do their job. There’s been no suggestion that anybody associated with that police service had any involvement in this or has any prejudice going in,” Tory told reporters. “I trust they will do their job as police officers do, in an honest and thorough manner.”

    After briefly moving on to other business, the meeting was disrupted by Cole, who demanded a forum to speak to the Miller case, noting it was not made part of the public agenda.

    Pringle earlier warned no disruptions would be tolerated, alluding to previous meetings where Cole and members of Black Lives Matter question the board on their oversight of police shootings and racial profiling.

    As Cole continued to speak, board members, including Tory, walked out of the room.

    Cole was eventually escorted outside by a group of officers, with one on each arm, and charged under the Trespass to Property Act for failing to leave when directed. The provincial offence comes with a $65 fine.

    Speaking to reporters outside, Cole said the way Miller was treated “is emblematic to us as Black people about how the system always turns us into the perpetrator even when we are the victim.”

    “As a Black person who knows that this can happen to us and then knows that after it’s revealed that it happened that they will continue to cover it up, I’m terrified,” Cole said. “And I have to act the way that I’m acting now because sitting here calmly and quietly is not going to save my life and it’s not going to save the lives of Black people.”


    Waterloo police will investigate Toronto police handling of Dafonte Miller caseWaterloo police will investigate Toronto police handling of Dafonte Miller caseWaterloo police will investigate Toronto police handling of Dafonte Miller caseWaterloo police will investigate Toronto police handling of Dafonte Miller case

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    Calgary police say a woman they’ve been seeking in a quadruple homicide earlier this month has been taken into custody in Toronto.

    Yu Chieh Liao, who goes by Diana Liao, is considered a person of interest in killings police have described as brutal and ruthless.

    Police say Liao is wanted on a Canada-wide warrant for fraud.

    Glynnis Fox, her older sister Tiffany Ear and Cody Pfeiffer were found dead in a burned out car at a northwest Calgary construction site on July 10.

    Read more:Calgary police recover three bodies after burning car put out in new subdivision

    Hanock Afowerk, the burned car’s owner and the man police believe was the intended target, was found dead in a rural area west of Calgary two days later.

    Afowerk and Liao knew each other.

    Police say the man Liao was spotted with in the Moose Jaw, Sask., area shortly after the homicides has been identified.

    Tewodros Mutugeta Kebede, who is 25, was arrested in Toronto on unrelated offences last week.

    Police have said Liao has ties to Calgary, Vancouver, Toronto, Regina and Moose Jaw, Sask.


    Woman sought in Calgary quadruple homicide taken into custody in TorontoWoman sought in Calgary quadruple homicide taken into custody in Toronto

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    About 700 ground crew workers at Canada’s busiest airport went on strike Thursday night after they rejected a contract offer from their employer.

    The members represented by the Teamsters union marched at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport waving picket signs and chanting “respect.”

    “We’re hoping to have little or no impact on the public,” union spokesperson Harjinder Badial told reporters after the membership voted.

    The labour dispute could have an impact on some operations at Pearson, but the Greater Toronto Airports Authority earlier said it had a contingency plan in place in the event of a strike or labour disruption but did not provide details.

    The unionized workers are employed by Swissport, a company that services 30 airlines at the airport including Sunwing, Air Transat, Air France and British Airways.

    The workers include baggage handlers, cargo handlers, cabin cleaners and other ground staff, as well as some employees who tow planes for the airlines Swissport services.

    The members of Teamsters Local 419 rejected a contract proposal from Swissport by a 95 per cent margin, Badial told reporters. He scoffed at the notion that Swissport said it was the final offer.

    “I’ve heard that many times before in my career as a labour unionist and I assure you eventually I will get a call,” he said.

    Workers will be picketing at the airport but Badial said they would not interfere with passengers trying to catch planes.

    “Our fight is not with the general public, it’s with Swissport management and we’re not here to delay any sort of flights or anything like that,” he said.

    Some of the airlines serviced by Swissport also said they were prepared if workers walked off the job.

    Air Transat said it was taking measures to ensure none of its flights would be delayed if a strike occurs. British Airways said it had a contingency plan and would continue to operate all its flights.

    Pierre Payette, Swissport Canada’s vice president of operations, said the company has bargained in good faith throughout contract talks. It also put out a memo to employees Tuesday, asking them to vote in favour of the company’s final offer.

    “We remain hopeful that there will be a positive outcome when employees vote today as our offer is fair to all parties,” Payette said in a statement issued earlier Thursday.

    The union, however, has described Swissport’s contract as unfair to its workers. It has also taken issue with the company’s decision to hire 250 temporary workers last May.

    The union filed a complaint with the Canadian Industrial Relations Board over that matter, alleging the temporary workers are poorly trained and have been involved in multiple accidents over the past few months.

    Swissport said it “categorically denies” those allegations.

    Read more: Region and travellers best served if airport a public asset: Opinion

    Expect a longer wait at Pearson Airport as enhanced security begins for U.S.-bound flights


    700 baggage handlers, ground crew at Pearson Airport on strike700 baggage handlers, ground crew at Pearson Airport on strike

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    WASHINGTON—Sean Spicer endured all manner of humiliation as Donald Trump’s press secretary. But when Trump hired Anthony Scaramucci on Friday, Spicer quit immediately.

    We now know why.

    Scaramucci, the fast-talking financier Trump appointed last week as communications director, insulted two of his top administration colleagues in a shockingly vulgar Wednesday interview that exposed deep internal divisions and raised questions about his judgment, temperament and basic competence.

    Trump himself has made a sport of violating traditional standards of political speech. But Scaramucci’s choice of words while speaking to a New Yorker journalist was next-level astonishing, the White House equivalent of new kid in school standing on a cafeteria table and shouting slurs at the senior class.

    Trump’s team of political novices is known for vicious infighting the president is said to enjoy and encourage. Its battles, however, are usually conducted behind the scenes and via anonymous quotes. There is no modern precedent for the president’s chief communicator lambasting his colleagues on the record, especially in such lewd terms.

    “Did you read that story? This guy’s f---ing out of his mind,” said Rick Tyler, a former communications director for Republican Sen. Ted Cruz and now an MSNBC analyst.

    Scaramucci is a well-dressed, well-coiffed Wall St. businessman with no experience in government but a Trump-impressing proficiency in combat on cable television. His good-natured public debut in the White House briefing room on Friday was appraised by U.S. journalists as “smooth” and “slick.”

    Since then, however, he has done so many strange things in the course of his twin wars against leaks and embattled Trump chief of staff Reince Priebus that a media observer for the Washington Post described him as a “walking, talking, leak-busting disaster.”

    With Trump’s apparent blessing, Scaramucci has waged a public campaign to humiliate Priebus into resigning. In his jaw-dropping, unsolicited Wednesday phone call to Ryan Lizza, the New Yorker’s Washington correspondent, Scaramucci said: “Reince is a f---ing paranoid schizophrenic, a paranoiac.”

    Of Steve Bannon, Trump’s chief strategist, Scaramucci said: “I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own c--k.”

    He also accused Priebus of having “c--k-blocked” him from a White House job for months, said he wanted to “f---ing kill all the leakers,” claimed that he had called the Department of Justice to accuse Priebus of a “felony,” referred to himself as “the Mooch,” and said he had to end the call to try to inflame Priebus via Twitter.

    “Gotta start tweeting some s--- to make this guy crazy,” he said.

    Scaramucci promised Thursday to tone down his vocabulary, but he offered no apologies.

    “I sometimes use colorful language. I will refrain in this arena but not give up the passionate fight for @realDonaldTrump’s agenda,” he said on Twitter.

    He had a bizarre 24 hours even before the New Yorker published the interview.

    After he told Lizza he was going on Twitter to intentionally irk Priebus, he tweeted that he was planning to contact the FBI “in light of the leak of my financial disclosure info, which is a felony.”

    In fact, no leak had occurred; the disclosure form was public information, available upon request. But Scaramucci told the New Yorker that he had indeed “called the FBI and the Department of Justice,” a remarkable breach of the traditional separation between the White House and justice officials.

    He also tagged Priebus in the tweet, clearly suggesting he thought Priebus was the leaker. But when journalists correctly reported that this was the suggestion, he deleted the tweet and said their inference was wrong.

    Then, on Thursday morning, he called in to a live CNN show to offer a third story. It went as follows: He was not suggesting Priebus was the leaker, but since journalists assumed he was suggesting this, Priebus probably was a leaker.

    “So if Reince wants to explain that he’s not a leaker, let him do that,” he said.

    His call to Lizza was not even the first false leak accusation of Scaramucci’s first week.

    On Tuesday, he told Politico that he was firing assistant press secretary Michael Short, a Priebus ally he had not yet personally informed. Then he falsely complained to reporters that the news he broke himself had been nefariously leaked.

    “The fact that you guys know about it before he does really upsets me as a human being and as a Roman Catholic. I should have the opportunity if I have to let somebody go to let the person go in a very humane, dignified way,” he said. “Because he probably has a family, right?”

    Christina Reynolds, former director of media affairs for Barack Obama’s White House and now senior vice-president at the Global Strategy Group, said administrations are “most effective when the staff is driving the president’s message, not nursing petty grudges and attacking each other.”

    Scaramucci’s rant seized headlines as Senate Republicans were struggling to pass something resembling a repeal of some part of Obamacare. Some Democrats worried that the circus in Trump’s orbit would again distract from more important issues.

    “Hey I’m as amazed/shocked/fascinated by the Mooch thing as the rest of us but health care bill is about to become law. Eyes on the ball,” Hawaii Democratic Sen. Brian Schatz said on Twitter.


    Anthony Scaramucci calls Trump’s chief of staff a ‘paranoid schizophrenic,’ tosses foul insults at top strategistAnthony Scaramucci calls Trump’s chief of staff a ‘paranoid schizophrenic,’ tosses foul insults at top strategistAnthony Scaramucci calls Trump’s chief of staff a ‘paranoid schizophrenic,’ tosses foul insults at top strategistAnthony Scaramucci calls Trump’s chief of staff a ‘paranoid schizophrenic,’ tosses foul insults at top strategist

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