Montreal is about to get a little more electrified, and not in the funky disco-pop kinda way. No, kinda in a slightly unnerving way, as more Montreal police officers are being equipped and trained with tasers.
A new batch of 12 tasers (a purchase approved by Montreal's public safety committee) are now being certified, and will be given to police officers in the métro (2), at Pierre Elliott Trudeau Airport (1) and at 9 downtown police stations, the Gazette reports.
More tasers in the hands of Montreal's police force doesn't sound too comforting, but you do have to remember that the weapon is less lethal than a gun, and formal recommendations have been put in place requiring officers to call an ambulance when a taser may be used in any situation.
Several fatal encounters between Montreal's police force and the homeless population of the city have occurred in the last couple of years, as the Gazette points out, which could have been avoided if tasers were on-hand as a substitute for firearms, giving some justification for more tasers in the police's arsenal.
Violence is certainly not always the answer, and Montreal coroner Jean Brochu also recommends a professional in mental health and social services be on-call in the community, so as to aid officers in identifying individuals who are in distress, but do not pose a serious/violent threat. A good idea, as having more perspectives on any situation is always beneficial.
For more on all things Montreal, follow Michael on Twitter @MDAlimonte
Less than two weeks after Montreal's 19th homicide of the year, the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) is reporting two more homicides, marking the city's 20th and 21st homicides of 2021.
Police are currently asking for the public's help tracking down suspects in the first of the two separate incidents, putting out a call for information.
Montreal's 20th homicide of the year
A 75-year-old man died of his injuries on September 17 following an attack earlier in the week, marking Montreal's 20th homicide of 2021. Now, Montreal police are asking for the public's help tracking down the suspects.
According to the SPVM, the suspects broke into the victim's apartment in Lasalle at approximately 1:30 a.m. on September 12.
"They forced their way into an apartment and assaulted the victim, who was later transported to the hospital. They also smashed objects inside the apartment, as well as the patio door, before leaving the premises," the SPVM says.
"At this time, all indications are that the victim was not the person targeted by the suspects."
The SPVM is asking the public to come forward with any information about this incident.
If you have information, you can contact Info-Crime Montréal anonymously and confidentially at 514-393-1133, or fill out the report form available on infocrimemontreal.ca.
Montreal's 21st homicide of the year
A 23-year-old died in hospital following a stabbing in Ville-Marie on the morning of September 18.
SPVM spokesperson Véronique Dubuc said police were called to rue Sherbrooke, near rue Mansfield, at around 1:45 a.m.
"When police arrived on the scene, they located two victims with upper-body injuries, both were transported to hospital," said Dubuc.
Dubuc said the second victim, a 20-year-old male, is considered "out of danger."
Investigators are still trying to understand the circumstances that led to the incident, but Dubuc said initial information suggests this was an altercation between two groups of individuals, and that three to four suspects fled on foot.
A perimeter is still in place this morning, and major crime investigators are on-site, along with a forensic identification expert.
Gun violence in our city has been on the rise for the past few months now. Recently, Montreal police received 911 calls for two separate shootings in the city. The first happened during the afternoon around 3:50 p.m., where multiple civilians reported hearing gunshots fired at the corner of Émile-Journault and 9th Avenue in Saint-Michel.
SPVM spokesperson Caroline Chèvrefils told MTL Blog that when police arrived on the scene, they found a 23-year-old man who had been shot in the upper body. He was then transported to the hospital and we're told that his life is not in danger.
J'ÉTAIS LÀ, à moins de 50 mètres, #LIVE, en porte-à-porte avec @DenisCoderre quand c'est arrivé.
Il y a une garde… https://t.co/ZKT4XOeHQl
City council candidate Guillaume Lavoie from Ensemble Montréal tweeted that he and Denis Coderre were campaigning door-to-door right next to where the shooting happened. There is a daycare nearby. Some citizens told us that it was the 3rd time in a short time," Lavoie wrote.
The second shooting happened just after 12 a.m. on Thursday, September 16, only eight hours after the other shooting, in an apartment on rue Despréaux, which left a 29-year-old man wounded in the upper body. He was brought to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
"There was an altercation that happened in the apartment between several people and that's when gunshots were fired," Chèvrefils explained. "One or several suspects fled the scene before the arrival of the police."
The investigations for both incidents are ongoing and no arrests have been made in connection to the two shootings as of yet.
In an investigation that began last March in connection with arms traffickers active in Montreal, a team of Quebec police, which was composed of officers from the Sûreté du Québec and the SPVM, conducted searches that resulted in the seizure of firearms, illicit drugs and thousands of dollars in cash.
On September 15, 11 firearms searches were conducted, five in residences and six in vehicles in the Montreal, Terrebonne, Mirabel and Drummondville areas.
These searches led to the seizure of :
Six firearms, including four handguns
High capacity magazines and ammunition
More than 30 grams of cocaine
A few pounds of hashish
Several tablets, which will be analyzed
More than $3,000
Police also made six arrests during this operation, according to a press release.
The suspects are set to appear at the Montreal courthouse on Thursday in connection with the arms trafficking investigation.
According to the SPVM, Litvack was a baseball coach in the Lake Saint-Louis area and an administrator for the Lake Saint Louis-area baseball organization between 2008 and 2021. The kids he coached ranged in age from 13 to 21. He also worked for the Dollard-des-Ormeaux minor hockey association for about 10 years until 2017.
"The suspect is accused of sexually assaulting one of his players to whom he gave private lessons. Investigators have reason to believe that the accused may have had other victims," the SPVM says.
Police describe him as a 41-year-old white male with brown short hair and hazel eyes. He is 1.78 metres tall and weighs 93 kilograms, or about 205 pounds. He's anglophone but also speaks French.
Anyone with information about Litvack can anonymously and confidentially contact Info-Crime Montréal.
If you require resources or assistance surrounding sexual assault in Quebec, the CAVAC helpline is available 24/7. Those who may need support can call 1-866-532-2822. Other crisis lines and 24/7 options can be found at The Lifeline Canada.