Canadian News

Families of Nova Scotia shooting victims launch class-action lawsuit against RCMP

The families of the Nova Scotians killed and injured during the mass shooting in April have filed a proposed class-action against the RCMP.

Jonathan Bradley Montreal, QC
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The families of the Nova Scotians killed and injured during the mass shooting in April have filed a proposed class-action against the RCMP, according to CTV News.

Twenty-two people were killed when a shooter went on a violent rampage across central Nova Scotia on April 18 and 19.

The representative plaintiffs in the proposed lawsuit are Tyler Blair and Andrew O’Brien.

Blair is the son of Greg Blair and the stepson of Jamie Blair, both of whom were killed by the shooter on the evening of April 18 at their home in Portapique, NS.

O’Brien is the widower of Heather O’Brien, a nurse at the Victorian Order of Nurses who was killed by the shooter on April 19 near their home in Masstown, NS.

Patterson Law, the law firm handling the application to the court, said the claim alleges the Nova Scotia RCMP failed to “protect the safety and security of the public” during the mass shooting.

Sandra McCulloch, the lawyer for the plaintiffs, said the court action is about seeking answers for the families.

"There are numerous more questions than there are answers," said McCulloch. "And how did the events become as tragic as they did in how they unfolded?"

One of the failures listed in the court documents is that authorities did not issue a province-wide emergency alert during the rampage. The plaintiffs in the proposed lawsuit allege the RCMP failed to alert the public while the rampage was going on.

The court documents allege the RCMP failed to contain the shooter in Portapique after he killed 13 people in the township before going on to kill nine more people.

The lawsuit is seeking punitive damages against the Nova Scotia RCMP for how it handled the investigation into it.

The court documents allege the vehicle of one of the victims was returned to the family by the RCMP after the investigation with “gun casings and body parts still in the automobile.”

McCulloch said they have given the province of Nova Scotia notice they intend on including it in the lawsuit.

The documents have been filed in the Nova Scotia Supreme Court, and the lawsuit has to be certified by that court. The allegations have not been tested in a court of law at this time.

This lawsuit is the second proposed one filed by the families in Nova Scotia. The first lawsuit filed seeks damages against the estate of the shooter.

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