Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS Julie Bertrand comforts her son Steven Bertrand at a hospital in this undated family handout photo.

Man in stable condition after being shot in head at Maniwaki courthouse

MONTREAL — An altercation at a Quebec courthouse that left an 18-year-old man in hospital with a gunshot wound to the head is raising questions about security at the province’s courthouses.

The young man was listed in stable condition Thursday, a day after he was shot after fighting with a special constable at a small courthouse in Maniwaki, Que., about 130 km north of Ottawa.

Franck Perales, the head of the union representing courthouse constables, said his organization has been calling for more security in courtrooms across the province.

“For two or three years the union has been ringing the alarm,” he said in an interview. ”We’ve had meetings with the government and concerned parties to inform them on the lack of manpower, especially in smaller courtrooms or those (outside big cities).”

Quebec’s police watchdog released a statement Wednesday saying the 18-year-old — who has been identified as Steven Bertrand — managed to seize the constable’s baton and allegedly used it to strike the officer over the head at the courthouse.

The constable then took out a gun and fired it, hitting Bertrand at least once in the head, the statement said.

Perales believes the incident could have been avoided by having more than one special constable on duty.

“Since there was no backup, no reinforcement, no support, he had to manage alone, and nobody helped him,” Perales said.

A bystander uploaded a video to YouTube purporting to show the incident. The video shows someone in uniform grappling with a man in a room lined with chairs, who is eventually joined by several other uniformed agents.

Moments later, the video shows an officer seemingly pointing a gun and shooting once towards a target that is off-camera, followed by people screaming and crying.

Perales said the video showed the constable had called for help and had not received adequate support from the people nearby, whom he believes to be private security guards and youth support workers.

Just Posted

Red Deerians brave the chill to spend Family Day in the new Celebration Plaza

The 2019 Canada Winter Games hub attracted a lot of parents and kids

Stettler RCMP search for suspects

Attempted theft of an ATM

Sign cost a concern for some in Red Deer

Installation complete on south end welcome signs

Historic win for Team Nunavut at Canada Winter Games

Four years in the making boiled down to a collection of firsts… Continue reading

Canadian women beat US 2-0 to win inaugural Rivalry Series

DETROIT — The inaugural Rivalry Series was created to give Canada and… Continue reading

Don Cherry blasts Hurricanes as ‘jerks’; team responds with his words on T-shirt

TORONTO — Don Cherry’s latest rant about the Carolina Hurricanes and their… Continue reading

Country star Miranda Lambert reveals secret marriage

NASHVILLE — Country star Miranda Lambert celebrated Valentine’s Day weekend with the… Continue reading

‘Black Panther’ costume designer blazes trail to inspire

LOS ANGELES — Ruth E. Carter is a black woman blazing a… Continue reading

Chicago police: Jussie Smollett assault case has ‘shifted’

Chicago police said Saturday the investigation into the assault reported by Jussie… Continue reading

Still-active human rights case speaks to lasting homophobia in Canada: activists

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Just over 14 years ago, the government of… Continue reading

Alberta missionaries among the Canadians heading home from riot-stricken Haiti

MONTREAL — A Canadian couple who had to leave Haiti due to… Continue reading

Man charged in daughter’s death in hospital with self-inflicted gunshot wound: police

Police say a man charged with first-degree murder in the death of… Continue reading

Most Read