The SIU is appealing for witnesses after an incident between a 19 year old man and Ottawa police.

Last Thursday, around 11 in the morning, police went to the Herongate Plaza after receiving a call.

Upon arrival, the person of interest fled and was quickly apprehended on Walkley Road.

The man had to be taken to hospital with serious injuries.

The SIU is called for incidents involving police where there has been death, serious injury or allegations of sexual assault.

=============

MPP Randy Hillier is disputing the reason for his indefinite suspension from the PC caucus.

In a letter to party member in his Lanark- Frontenac- Kingston riding — Hillier claims he was removed for clashing with two of Premier Ford’s senior most advisers.

Hillier says he challenged the justification for his suspension and was given a list of what he called quote “questionable and childish grievances” by backroom operatives — including not clapping enough in the house.

Hillier was indefinitely suspended from caucus because of comments he made as parents of children with autism packed Queen’s Park to protest recent autism funding changes.

Hillier maintains him saying *yada yada yada* was directed at an NDP MPP.

===============

An Ottawa courtroom has heard from a woman who says Abdirahman Abdi sexually assaulted her before his violent arrest in the final hours of his life.

An Ottawa police officer… Constable Daniel Montsion is accused in Abdi’s death.

The woman told court that Abdirahman Abdi grabbed her through her open car window, and that the incident has had a lasting effect.

The CBC reports that the woman told court a man with an “intense stare” locked eyes with her before asking to shake her hand. She testified that he held onto her hand… then groped her breast.

The woman had pulled up next to the coffee shop where police were soon called, and began pursuing Abdi.

Abdi died in hospital after being arrested by police, in July 2016.

Meantime, the defence wants the trial halted, or all charges thrown out. They allege the special investigations unit mishandled video footage of Abdi’s arrest.

The video has been shown in court but not accepted into evidence. A decision on the defence motion is not expected for several weeks.

==============

If you’re flying out of the Ottawa airport today, you might want to check your flight time.

A ban of Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft could cause significant delays, as airlines are forced to shuffle their fleet.

The Max 8 isn’t part of the regular schedule at the Ottawa airport, but the ban could affect connecting flights.

Air Canada says they carry nine to twelve thousand people a day, so customers can expect delays.

Westjet has grounded 13 Max 8 aircraft, but says they have more than 92 per cent of their overall fleet in operation.

…and Sunwing has pulled all four Max 8’s from rotation.

=============

The N-D-P says it’s expecting deep cuts in the Ford government’s first budget to be tabled next month.

Deputy leader Sara Singh says in a statement that the cuts have “only just begun.”

Her comments come in the wake of Premier Doug Ford acknowledging yesterday that management-level jobs will be lost in the planned merger of 20 provincial health agencies.

In a change of messaging from no planned job losses, Ford now says so-called “front-line” jobs will be protected as the province creates a new organization called Ontario Health.

============

A former cabinet minister in the Mike Harris government has been nominated to be the next chair of Legal Aid Ontario.

Charles Harnick spearheaded the creation of the agency during his tenure as attorney general in the late 1990s.

In a statement yesterday, Justice Minister Caroline Mulroney says Harnick — quote — “has a long-standing commitment to improving access to justice and a track record of achieving results.”

His nomination is subject to review by the legislature’s standing committee on government agencies.

=============

The improved economy is expected to give the Trudeau government more fiscal room than anticipated in next week’s pre-election budget.

However, conditions could look much different as the October vote approaches given a wobbly economic finish to 2018.

An abrupt deceleration in economic growth over the final three months of last year has dimmed the outlook for this year.

Last week, the Bank of Canada predicted a weaker economic performance through the first half of 2019, compared to its previous forecast of just a short slump.

===============

A new report suggests the produce-heavy fare touted in the new federal food guide may be too expensive — or not enticing enough — to easily form the basis of most Canadians’ diets.

Researchers at Dalhousie University and the University of Guelph found over 52 per cent of consumers surveyed said they face barriers in adopting the guide’s recommendations.

More than 26 per cent of people cited affordability, with others blaming taste preferences, lack of free time, dietary and cultural restrictions and a lack of availability in their area.

==============

More Indigenous communities in Canada are employing guardians to monitor the ecosystem and protect sensitive areas and species.

At a national gathering in Vancouver this week, guardians raised alarm about environmental degradation and climate change in their territories.

Terry Teegee, regional chief of the B-C Assembly of First Nations, says Indigenous communities are often the first to experience the impacts of climate change

The federal government has committed 25-million dollars to a four-year pilot project to support Indigenous guardian programs in communities.

==============

U-S federal prosecutors are conducting a criminal investigation into Facebook’s data deals with major electronics manufacturers.

The New York Times reports a grand jury in New York has subpoenaed information from at least two companies known for making smartphones and other devices.

Facebook describes those data deals as innocuous efforts to help smartphone makers provide Facebook features to users before the social network had its own app.

===============

Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort has been sentenced to a total of seven and a half years in prison, and then hit almost immediately with fresh state charges in New York that could put him outside the president’s power to pardon.

In Washington yesterday, U-S District Judge Amy Berman Jackson brushed aside Manafort’s pleas for leniency and rebuked him for misleading the U-S government about his lucrative foreign lobbying work and for encouraging witnesses to lie on his behalf.

==============

U-S Democrat Beto O’Rourke says he’s running for president in 2020.

O’Rourke was little-known outside his hometown of El Paso until he challenged Republican Senator Ted Cruz last year.

He got within three percentage points of upsetting Cruz in the largest Republican state and shattered fundraising records while using grassroots organizing and social media savvy to mobilize young voters and minorities.

=============

Indian and Pakistani officials are meeting amid an easing of tensions to discuss opening a visa-free border crossing to allow pilgrims to easily visit a Sikh shrine close to the border with Pakistan.

An Indian External Affairs Ministry spokesman says the talks started after a Pakistani delegation crossed over to the Indian side on Thursday.

Tensions flared last month after a suicide attack killed 40 Indian paramilitary soldiers in Kashmir, prompting the Indian air force to launched an airstrike inside Pakistan.

Pakistan retaliated and said it shot down two Indian air force planes.

Filed under: News