Toronto cops recorded mocking woman with Down syndrome expected to plead guilty

TORONTO — Two Toronto police officers who were recorded mocking a 29-year-old woman with Down syndrome are expected to plead guilty to misconduct before a disciplinary committee today.

Const. Sasa Sljivo and Const. Matthew Saris are set to appear before a police tribunal for the plea and submissions.

Sljivo is charged with misconduct related to the use of profane, abusive or insulting language, while Saris is charged with misconduct related to the failure to report Sljivo’s comments, which contravened the Ontario Human Rights Code.

The charges under the Police Services Act stem from an incident that took place in November of last year, and which the officers have called a “lapse in judgment” in a written apology.

The lawyer representing Francie Munoz and her family has said the comments were made inside a police cruiser after the officers pulled over his clients, and were captured by the vehicle’s dashboard camera.

The Munoz family only learned of the comments because they decided to fight the ticket issued at the time and requested the evidence against them.

The family has said Sljivo can be heard describing Munoz as “disfigured” and a “half-person,” while Saris is heard laughing and agreeing.

Munoz has also filed a complaint with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario, arguing the officers’ behaviour amounts to discrimination.

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