Police Use of Conducted Energy Weapon Raises Public Concern, Arrests Made
SIOUX LOOKOUT – NEWS – In Sioux Lookout, an incident involving local law enforcement has resulted in two individuals being arrested and charged. Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) officers of the Sioux Lookout Detachment arrested the pair following a physical confrontation.
Early morning on Monday, July 10, 2023, around 1:00 am, an OPP officer on routine patrol noticed an individual trespassing on local properties. The officer detained this individual, who was heavily intoxicated. Upon detaining them, the accused began to assault the officer, attempting to seize the use-of-force tools from the officer’s belt. When attempts to de-escalate the situation failed, a conducted energy weapon was deployed to gain control of the situation and ensure public safety. During the arrest, a second individual attempted to obstruct the officer’s duties.
Jessica MAMAKWA, a 23-year-old from Kasabonika Lake First Nation, has been charged under the Criminal Code with Assault with Intent to Resist Arrest. If convicted, she could face penalties ranging from fines to imprisonment.
Another individual, Annette KAMENAWATAMIN, a 34-year-old from Sioux Lookout, has been charged with Obstructing a Police Officer, an offence that also carries potential penalties of fines or imprisonment upon conviction.
Both accused were released from custody and are scheduled to appear in the Ontario Court of Justice in Sioux Lookout on August 8, 2023.
Following this incident, a video recorded by a private individual, which captured part of the event, was released on social media. This has led to public concern regarding the police tactics used during the arrest. The OPP, however, maintains that the video shows only a segment of the event and demonstrates the officer’s selection of the most appropriate use-of-force option, aiming to minimize risk to all involved.