Police identify victims of triple homicide near Oneida Nation

Bodkin Road was closed to traffic in the area where three bodies were found in Middlesex Centre, Ont. (CTV London)

Three members of Six Nations found dead

The discovery of three bodies just outside the Oneida of the Thames First Nation has turned into a triple homicide investigation.

The two men and one woman found dead on Sunday in Middlesex Centre, near Bodkin Road and Jones Drive, were from Six Nations of the Grand River, a First Nations community near Brantford Ont.

Police were called to the area at 10 a.m. Sunday after reports of a grey truck in a field.

The OPP would not say whether the bodies were found inside the truck, or outside.

Police confirmed the identities of the deceased as 37-year-old Melissa Trudy Miller, 33-year-old Alan Grant Porter and 32-year-old Michael Shane Jamieson.

On Wednesday, multiple OPP K-9 searches were done in the area where the truck and bodies were found.

While police revealed the names and ages of the victims, nothing was said about the cause of the deaths and few other details are known.

However police have zeroed in on the grey 2006 Chevrolet Silverado pickup and are asking members of the public who may have seen the truck in the area of Bodkin Road prior to 10 a.m. on Nov 4th to contact them.

Police have released a generic photo of a grey 2006 Chevrolet Silverado, similar to the one OPP say was located with the bodies.

According to Global News, though the grisly discovery wasn’t made on Oneida Nation land, its Chief, Jessica Hill, has been in contact with Six Nations.

“We’re sending our condolences to the community of Six Nations, to the families there” she said.

“We’re hoping the individuals responsible will be brought to justice.”

The OPP has set up a hotline for tips related to the homicide investigation.

Anyone with information is asked to call a new police tipline at 1-844-677-5050, the Six Nations Police Service at 1519-445-2811 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Police have confirmed that the homicides are not being investigated in connection with any other cases.

Similar incident in 2017

The remains of 48-year-old Douglas Hill were found on Oneida land, in Aug 2017. He was last seen in Six Nations on June 24th. Hill’s death was considered a homicide.

The cause of his death has not been made public. Four people were charged in connection with the case including a 17-year-old girl. The charges were all dismissed last month.

No information is available as to why the prosecution ended.

By Black Power, RPM Staff

Man facing charges after fireworks discharged at Justice for Our Stolen Children camp

Teepees are seen at the Justice for Our Stolen Children camp near the Saskatchewan Legislative Building in Regina. June 27, 2018, THE CANADIAN PRESS

A man faces charges after fireworks were discharged towards the Justice for Our Stolen Children camp in Regina.

According to a news release, police were sent to the protest camp, located in Wascana Park at 2 a.m. on Sunday, after a man got out of a vehicle parked at the legislative building and discharged a Roman candle, which shot multiple flammable projectiles at the camp then fled in the vehicle.

Police said no one was injured as a result of the incident and the camp of teepees did not sustain any damage.

Twenty-five year-old Brent Holland, of Yorkton is charged with mischief under $5,000, uttering threats, assault with a weapon and arson with disregard for human life.

Holland was released from custody and will appear in provincial court in Regina on Sept. 17.

The camp has been set up in the park since late February to draw attention to racial injustice and the disproportionate number of Indigenous children apprehended by child-welfare workers

Saskatchewan Premier wants Police to remove Justice for Our Stolen Children camp

The Justice for Our Stolen Children camp has grown to nine teepees.

Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe is backing calls for police to remove teepees that protesters have set up on the legislature grounds, forcing changes to Canada Day plans.

Moe says there are laws that cover the park surrounding the provincial legislature to ensure that it’s available to everyone.

“The fact (is) that the protests that we do see across the way are breaking laws here, and those laws should be enforced,” Moe said Thursday.

The Justice for Our Stolen Children camp was set up to protest racial injustice and the disproportionate number of Indigenous children apprehended by child-welfare workers.

The camp started in late February and was dismantled early last week before being set up again June 21 with more teepees.

Bylaws prohibit overnight camping, placement of structures and burning wood and other combustibles in the park.

The Provincial Capital Commission said on Wednesday that it has had to make alterations to its Canada Day festivities, because the space where the camp is situated normally has a concert stage and beer gardens.

Regina police have said there’s no need to step in at this point, because a meeting is scheduled for Monday between the protesters and five government ministers in the town of Fort Qu’Appelle.

Camp protester Robyn Pitawanakwat said Thursday that she thinks there are laws being broken by pushing out peaceful protests.

“There are charter rights that are being put in violation when that happens,” she said. “Breaking the law is not just one sided in this regard. Bylaws are very minor and charter rights supersede those.”

Moe said it’s the government’s expectation that the teepees will be removed either before or after the meeting. As of Thursday morning, there were nine teepees at the camp.

“We continue to work with First Nations leaders across the province on the issues that have been raised just here,” Moe said. “If the teepees are removed previous to that (meeting), that would be positive as well.”

Pitawanakwat said there needs to be a focus on justice before the teepees are removed.

“We need families coming home,” she said. “We need to have children put back in biological family settings that are open and willing to take them.”

Ryan McKenna, The Canadian Press


FSIN outraged by Sask government, police handling of protest camp outside legislature

On Monday, police arrested six people from the teepee near the Saskatchewan Legislature in Regina.

On Monday, police arrested six people from the teepee near the Saskatchewan Legislature in Regina.

The Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) says it is outraged by how the Saskatchewan government and police handled protests outside the provincial legislature.

Six people from the Justice for our Stolen Children camp were arrested on Monday as a teepee was removed from the site.

The camp was set up at the end of February shortly after the acquittals of Gerald Stanley in the fatal shooting of Colten Boushie and Raymond Cormier in the death of Manitoba teen Tina Fontaine. Both victims were Indigenous.

It protested racial injustice and the disproportionate number of Indigenous children in government care.

“The current child-welfare system is failing and contributing to many of the social problems our children are forced to endure,” FSIN Chief Bobby Cameron said in a statement Tuesday.

“We call for respect and peace to rectify the provincial child-welfare system that is failing.”

Cameron said Indigenous communities know what’s best for their children and how to help them succeed in life.

The province had served notice that the camp would be shut down. Authorities evicted most people on Friday and those remaining were supposed to leave the site by noon Sunday.

Justice Minister Don Morgan said he didn’t want the removal of the camp to be a setback in the government’s relationship with First Nations.

Boushie’s mother, Debbie Baptiste, said the fight continues.

“We’re going to keep setting up our camps. We’re going to keep lighting our fires. We will not stop,” Baptiste said Monday.

“I’m not going to stop until change is made in the courtrooms, in the government.”

The Canadian Press


Protesters arrested, Tipi camp dismantled after more than 100 days in Wascana Park

Tipi camp dismantled after more than 100 days in Wascana Park

Several people arrested by Regina police on Monday at the “Justice for our Stolen Children” camp have been released without charges.

The move came as authorities dismantled the tipi in the park on Monday evening.

The camp’s sacred fire went out just after 7 p.m. Officials then took down the camp’s tipi, which was the last structure at the protest.

The rest of the camp was dismantled by police and government officials on Friday morning. Police said they would give campers 48 hours after the dismantling of the camp to extinguish their sacred fire and remove their tipi, but demonstrators decided on Sunday not to leave the scene.

“The agreement was made that the tipi would come down, and that was agreed upon by the campers, and today unfortunately that camp wasn’t taken down, so we’re here to assist with that.” Supt. Darcy Koch told the media.

The camp was erected 111 days ago in response to the acquittal of Gerald Stanley in the death of Colten Boushie, and the acquittal of Raymond Cormier in the death of Winnipeg teen Tina Fontaine.

Members of the camp have said that they want to talk to government officials about their concerns. So far the two groups have not been able to come together for such a meeting.

Minister of Justice Don Morgan said the government expected the tipi to be removed on Sunday and that the park isn’t intended for overnight camping. Morgan said he wasn’t able to comment on the timing of the arrests, since it would be up to police to take those actions.

Morgan added that he didn’t want it to be a setback in the government’s relationship with First Nations in Saskatchewan. He said he will be reaching out to FSIN Chief Bobby Cameron in the coming days, and has plans to travel to Red Pheasant First Nation.

According to Morgan, the government is still willing to meet with protestors about the issues raised at the camp.

“You don’t need to have a tent up in Wascana to have a meeting and reach out to government,” Morgan said.

Morgan said he wants to reach out to the campers in the coming days, but will wait until emotions aren’t as high.

CTV Regina


‘Intimidated no longer’: Families march in Saskatoon amid allegations of police violence

Sheila Tataquason said she didn’t resist the police dog that bit her in 2013, even after it latched onto her arm. (Guy Quenneville/CBC News)

Parents of 2 dead Indigenous men among those calling for end to police violence

The families of an Indigenous man who was shot at by police and another whose death is at the centre of a police inquest joined a Saskatoon march against police violence on Saturday.

Wearing a shirt that reads “#Justice4Austin,” Agatha Eaglechief joined the march of about a dozen people who played drums, sang songs and carried signs past a heavily trafficked 22nd Street West, as they travelled from Pleasant Hill Park to the police station.

Agatha’s son Austin Eaglechief died in summer 2017 following a police chase in which shots were fired by officers. She said she still does not know what led to shots being fired that day, despite having seen helicopter video footage.

“Everyday I wake up hoping I can get an answer,” Agatha said.

Agatha Eaglechief at a march against police violence, holding a photo of her deceased son Austin Eaglechief. (Guy Quenneville/CBC News)

While an autopsy clears gunshots as the cause of death, which included a high-speed crash with another vehicle, Agatha said in her view shots should have never been fired because her son had mental health and addiction issues.

‘I’m still fighting,’ says mother of Jordan Lafond

Among those speaking before the march began was Charmaine Dreaver, the mother of Jordan Lafond. Lafond died on in October 2016 after crashing into a fence during a police chase. His death is the subject of an upcoming June coroner’s inquest.

“I’m very upset about [how] the police act against so many people [that] have been hurt. It’s been very, very hard. I’m still fighting. I’ll never give up on the fight for Jordan,” Dreaver said to those who gathered.

“We need to be treated better and equally as humans.”

Charmaine Dreaver, left, with family members are still waiting for answers at an upcoming inquest into her son Jordan Lafond’s death. (Guy Quenneville/CBC News)

Police dog bite victim speaks

Sheila Tataquason was bitten by a police dog in 2013 and has been vocal about how it impacted her life.

The canine officer had been chasing an armed robbery suspect and latched onto Tataquason’s arm, although she was not involved, and has not received compensation from police despite facing nerve damage, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder since she was bit.

“I’m here to support all the people and not to be intimidated no longer by the Saskatoon city police,” she said.

Organizers say events like this, organized by the Saskatoon Coordinating Committee Against Police Violence, are a push toward greater transparency by police and also share information about citizens’ rights when it comes to police.

CBC News · Posted: Mar 31, 2018


Reader Submission 

Judge Grants Release to Halfway House for Red Fawn Fallis

Bismarck Tribune, June 22, 2017

A federal judge has given Red Fawn Fallis permission to move from a jail in Rugby to a halfway house.

U.S. District Judge Daniel Hovland ordered on Tuesday that Fallis be released as soon as space is available at Centre Inc. in Fargo. Hovland had previously denied a similar request for Fallis, who is accused of shooting at police officers during a Dakota Access Pipeline protest on Oct. 27.

In his order, Hovland cited Fallis’ successful completion of a furlough to attend a memorial service in Colorado for her mother and the need for easier communication with her attorney, Bruce Ellison, of Rapid City, S.D.

U.S. Attorney David Hagler had opposed the request, saying she remained a danger to the community and a flight risk.

Fallis’ trial, which was scheduled for July 17, has been postponed to Dec. 5. Ellison asked for the continuance due to the amount of evidence and legal issues in the case. The government did not oppose this request.

Ellison has also requested to move the jury trial out of Bismarck to another jurisdiction. Ellison cited “the massive, pervasive and prejudicial pre-trial publicity that has attended the pipeline protests and, specifically, her arrest and prosecution.”

The government and judge have not yet responded to his request.


Enbridge Re-Examined Stake in Bakken Pipeline after Dakota Access Protests

Enbridge president and CEO Al Monaco attends the company’s annual general meeting in Toronto in this 2015 file photo. (Chris Young/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

The Globe and Mail | May 11, 2017

The intense images of clashes between protesters and U.S. law enforcement at the construction site of the Dakota Access pipeline south of the border last year made Canada’s Enbridge Inc. reconsider its minority stake in the controversial project.

Chief executive Al Monaco revealed Thursday that he, the rest of the executive team, the board and other units of the Calgary-based pipeline company spent weeks re-examining their already-stated plan to acquire a 27.6-per-cent interest in the Bakken pipeline system – which includes the Dakota Access pipeline.

“It was hard to miss what was going on out there. And we were very concerned about it,” Mr. Monaco told reporters following his company’s annual general meeting.

“Frankly we spent a lot of time pondering this issue, given the circumstances,” he said. “We considered all kinds of alternatives, just like we do with any investment. This one had, certainly, a heightened degree of concern given what was going on.”

Mr. Monaco and other North American energy executives have argued that pipelines are now the “point of attack” for environmental opposition to new oil and natural gas projects. In early January, it became apparent that Enbridge had delayed its plan to acquire an interest in the Bakken properties for $1.5-billion.

What’s now clear is Enbridge’s unease was spurred by protests, and confrontations between U.S. law enforcement and opponents, at the Missouri River in Standing Rock, N.D. Construction was allowed to continue only after the project received a required easement from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – the federal agency tasked with issuing permits for water crossings for such pipeline projects – under orders from U.S. President Donald Trump.

Enbridge finally decided to continue to move forward with the deal for the near-constructed pipeline after looking at the vetting the project had already received by operator Energy Transfer Partners LLC, including a number of route changes made in response to environmental concerns, Mr. Monaco said. Energy Transfer Partners and the Corps of Engineers “actually did a fair job, a good job, of listening to people,” he said, reiterating a promise to work closely with Indigenous communities affected by projects.

Oil shipments on the Dakota Access pipeline, now partially owned by Enbridge, are set to begin as soon as Sunday.

However, the protests against Dakota Access, and other oil pipelines, haven’t ended. A few dozen protesters gathered outside the Enbridge meeting on Thursday, speaking against both the Dakota Access pipeline and the $7.5-billion Line 3 replacement program, which will see the refurbishment and expansion of pipeline already in the ground.

Enbridge is waiting on draft environmental impact statement from Minnesota on Line 3. And while the project has received approvals in Canada, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs has filed a court challenge, citing Canada’s climate change commitments and other concerns about water and the environment.

Lawyer Tara Houska of the U.S. Indigenous environmental group Honor criticized Enbridge proceeding with its Dakota Access investment given the treatment of protesters.

Ms. Houska, who is originally from Minnesota, also said affected Indigenous people are opposed to the Line 3 project “across the board.”

On Thursday, Enbridge reported lower first-quarter earnings due to the timing of its $37-billion Spectra Energy Corp. takeover and warmer weather in Southern Ontario.

First-quarter earnings were $638-million or 54 cents a share, compared with $1.2-billion or $1.38 for the same quarter last year.

The change came as a result of a number of unusual and non-recurring factors, the company said, including the timing of the closing of its Spectra takeover, the impact of warmer-than-normal weather on gas distribution franchises, and transactions undertaken in 2016 to strengthen the balance sheet.

The first-quarter results reflect about one month of the financial contributions from the assets acquired in Enbridge’s takeover of Houston-based Spectra, which closed at the end of February.

The fact that profits from Spectra assets for January and most of February are not included in this year’s first-quarter results had a significant impact, Mr. Monaco said. Those two cold, high-gas volume months typically provide a disproportionate amount of earnings compared to the rest of the year.

But Enbridge says the creation of what is now North America’s largest infrastructure company will generate billions in additional profits this year. Its full-year, post-merger guidance stands at adjusted earnings of as much as $7.6-billion, before interest and taxes. That compares with about $4.7-billion.

“We’re very pleased with how the companies came together. We had a seamless Day-One transition, and integration-wise, we’re on track,” Mr. Monaco said on a conference call.

“When we account for the effects of closing in February, we’re where we expected to be.”


The FBI Likes Your Water Protectors Post Too: The Do’s and Don’ts

Protesters and law enforcement, including armored vehicles, converge at the front line of demonstrations on Highway 1806 in North Dakota. (Alan Berner/The Seattle Times)

The fight against Dakota Access is not over. Court battles continue, divestment efforts have pulled billions from the company, and resistance all over Turtle Island is ongoing. But while we, water protectors, stand up for the future generations, a massive strategy by state and federal law enforcement seeks to repress and destroy us.

To date, more than 800 cases have been filed against water protectors in the state of North Dakota. Police are combing social media, additional charges are being filed, and grand juries continue to issue indictments.

Despite the attack dogs, mace, rubber bullets, Tasers, water and sound cannons, tear gas, pepper spray, concussion grenades, and dog kennels, our people remained strong. But we must protect ourselves, relatives. Please consider these simple actions to keep you and your fellow water protectors safe:


Do not create lists of water protectors, do “shout outs” for water protectors or “tag” water protectors from direct actions

As great as it is to share memories from the frontlines and remind ourselves of the amazing people we met at camp, law enforcement wants to know who our networks are also. A quick moment of recognition is not worth the scrutiny of federal and state agents.

Compiling a list of water protectors makes the job of law enforcement easier, and can get into consent issues. Regardless of whether we are already on a list somewhere, we shouldn’t put ourselves and others at any unnecessary risk.

Do not spread gossip or rumors

Divide and conquer is an old tactic, and one that can be highly effective. Remember our common goal, despite our differences.

Do not tell others about your arrest prior to being in handcuffs

What happened leading up to your arrest is the part most interesting to prosecutors. They want to build a case against you, to get details that will lead to a conviction.

Do not believe law enforcement can get you out of trouble

Law enforcement does not have to tell you the truth. They are looking for information to hand to a prosecutor building their case.

Do not talk to anyone but your attorney about details of your case

Telling friends, loved ones, fellow water protectors, etc. puts them at risk for receiving a subpoena from the court. Save it for your attorney!


Do exercise your right to remain silent if approached by law enforcement of any kind

You have the constitutionally guaranteed right to remain silent. Once you assert this right, make sure you don’t break it – if you do, just restate it. Do not lie to law enforcement, that can get you in trouble. But always remember that law enforcement does not have to tell you the truth and you do not have to talk to them!

Do assume your social media is being monitored by law enforcement

That post about remembering the day you were arrested? Or the time you and your crew counted coup on DAPL security? Police see those posts, too. Protect yourself and others – think about how law enforcement would view your post before you post it!

Do put strong passwords on your phone, social media, email, etc. and use encrypted services like the Signal app or Riseup.net

Remember when your phone kept crashing at camp and you were pretty sure it kept being hacked? Better safe than sorry – do what you can to protect your personal information by using strong password (capital letter, lowercase letter, a number and a symbol) and applications that are encrypted.

Do contact legal support if you do not have an attorney yet

A court support team is working around the clock to get attorneys connected to water protectors, tracking court dates, handling travel back to North Dakota for court, and logistics for upcoming trials. Please fill out the online form to reach the team here. Fill out a travel form if you need assistance getting to court here.

Do look up your court date if you are unsure

Check here, under “Search Calendar” to determine when your court date is. If you have questions, call the Morton County Clerk at (701) 667-3358.

Do contact the legal team if you are a criminal defense attorney who is interested in representing water protectors

We have a huge caseload and need additional criminal attorneys to ensure representation of the water protectors who stood up for Mother Earth. Please contact us here.

If you’re a water protector and in need of legal advice, please contact the Freshet Collective or the Water Protector Legal Collective.

by Tara Houska, Indian Country Media Network, April 17, 2017


Cellphone Surveillance Technology Being Used By Local Police Across Canada

Police have described IMSI catchers as a ‘vital tool,’ used under warrant, to help pinpoint suspects. But civil liberties groups say there’s a lack of transparency and oversight in how police deploy the devices. (Reuters)

CBC News confirms at least 6 police departments use IMSI catchers but several of them won’t say for what

By Matthew Braga, Dave Seglins, CBC News Posted: Apr 12, 2017

At least six police forces across Canada are now using cellphone surveillance technology, but several of them won’t say whether they use the devices to eavesdrop on phone calls and text messages.

Calgary police, Ontario Provincial Police and Winnipeg police all confirmed to CBC News they own the devices — known as IMSI catchers, cell site simulators or mobile device identifiers (MDIs) — joining the RCMP, which has used the technology for its own investigations and to assist Toronto and Vancouver police.

While Ontario and Winnipeg police refused to say whether they use the technology to intercept private communications, Calgary police and the RCMP insist they only deploy their IMSI catchers to identify — and occasionally, in the RCMP’s case, track — cellular devices.

Police have described the surveillance devices as a “vital tool” used under warrant to help pinpoint suspects, and as a first step toward applying for wiretaps in serious criminal and national security investigations.

But Micheal Vonn, policy director of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association and a legal expert on privacy, says she’s concerned there isn’t a warrant process specific to IMSI catchers that establishes strict limits on how the technology is used given its potential for mass surveillance.

“It’s nothing but a policy choice for some law enforcement not to use the content interception capabilities,” said Vonn, referring to features some IMSI catchers have to eavesdrop on any cellphone within a radius of several blocks. It’s hard to believe “the tantalizing availability of such technology is not going to be exploited,” she said. “It will.”

In an unprecedented briefing with reporters last week, the RCMP insisted that its IMSI catchers cannot currently intercept calls, text messages and other private communication.

After a decade of silence, the RCMP revealed it owns 10 IMSI catchers, which were used in 19 criminal investigations last year and another 24 in 2015 — including emergency cases such as kidnappings or imminent threats to public safety.

Survey of police forces

CBC News has since contacted 30 provincial and municipal police forces across Canada to ask how many IMSI catchers they own, the number of operators trained to use them, and how many times the technology was used in 2015 and 2016.

Only Calgary police answered in full.

Micheal Vonn, policy director of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association, is concerned police may exploit the surveillance capabilities of IMSI catchers. (BCCLA.org)

Ryan Jepson, the head of Calgary police’s technical operations section, said his force has owned one IMSI catcher since 2015. It was used in six investigations that year, and eight more in 2016.

He says the device is only deployed by “a very small group of trained operators” within his unit, and is only used to identify suspects’ devices — not track their location or collect the content of their communications.

“It’s the same as the RCMP. We don’t intercept private communications,” Jepson said.

Ontario Provincial Police and Winnipeg police each possess at least one IMSI catcher, but declined to discuss:

  • Whether their technology is used to capture the contents of communications.
  • How many technicians are trained to operate the technology.
  • The number of investigations in which the device was used in 2015 and 2016.

Both forces said revealing more information could jeopardize ongoing investigations, court proceedings, and public and officer safety. But Jepson in Calgary disagrees.

“I have no issues with being transparent about it. It was never the intent to be secretive,” he said. “It was about being able to protect certain techniques.”

Others deny use

Several police forces told CBC News they neither own nor use IMSI catcher technology, including Charlottetown police; the forces in Thunder Bay, Sudbury, Halton, Hamilton and London, Ont.; and in Quebec City, Laval and Gatineau, and the Quebec Provincial Police.

Police in Montreal, Regina, Halifax, Ottawa, Niagara and Windsor, Ont., declined to comment, citing policies not to discuss investigative techniques.​

And police from York Region, Peel Region, Kingston and Waterloo in Ontario, as well as Victoria and the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary either didn’t respond in time for publication, or ignored CBC’s requests completely.

Durham Regional Police east of Toronto also ignored repeated requests from CBC to discuss IMSI catcher use, despite applying for a broad federal licence last summer that would allow the force to purchase such a device.

RCMP helps other forces

It’s still not clear whether police in Toronto and Vancouver also own and operate their own IMSI catchers, but CBC News has learned that the RCMP has used the technology on behalf of both forces in the past.

Edmonton police said they don’t own an IMSI catcher, but declined to say how many times they’ve used the technology during the past two years — or whether another police force helped them to do so.

An IMSI catcher pretends to be a cellphone tower to attract nearby cell signals. When it does, it can intercept the unique ID number associated with your phone, the International Mobile Subscriber Identity, or IMSI. That number can then be used to track your phone. (CBC)

The technique has been used in multiple Toronto police investigations, but in Vancouver it may have only been deployed once — in an emergency situation involving a missing person in 2007.

“The Device was used in an attempt to locate or verify the presence of a specific and known cellular phone,” wrote Darrin Hurwitz, legal counsel for Vancouver police’s access and privacy section, in a response last summer to a July 2015 Freedom of Information request from PIVOT Legal Society. “VPD does not own and has never owned this Device.”

Vancouver police didn’t respond to multiple requests for comment, including about whether the force received additional RCMP assistance or obtained its own device since answering PIVOT’s request.

Toronto police spokesperson Mark Pugash wrote in an email that they “do not discuss investigative techniques.”

Calls for rules

Watchdog groups have called for specialized warrants and better public reporting of how the devices are being used.

“We want the police to have the appropriate tools,” said Vonn of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association. “That they don’t have the appropriate oversight and that those tools have the potential for abuse […] the public cares very much about that.”

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada is investigating the RCMP’s use of IMSI catchers, following a complaint filed last year.

“What I can tell you is that we are looking at what type of information the IMSI devices and associated software used by the RCMP are capable of capturing,” spokesperson Tobi Cohen wrote in an email. “For instance, can and do they only capture the unique identifiers associated with a mobile device or are they also capable of capturing private voice, text and email communications.”

Her office called the lack of transparency “a concern,” and supports regular public reporting on the use and effectiveness of new technological powers — something the RCMP has said it could support.