The family of a First Nations man with severe disabilities who had a run in with a security guard on a traffic island in Winnipeg says they’ve been left “shaken” by the incident.
“At first I was fine there and then out of nowhere he came and asked me what I was trying to do,” said Brian McKay from Skownan First Nation but now lives in Winnipeg. “And then I was sitting there and he actually didn’t give me time to, time to leave the situation.”
In the video, captured by a bystander, a security officer from 494 Security Services can be seen confronting McKay because he’s on the island.
“He’s under arrest, he’s on private property,” the guard can be heard yelling at two people trying to intervene. McKay is sitting on the ground.
McKay said he was not aggressive when security first approached him.
In the video, he does swing at the officer, but according to McKay, he was trying to protect himself.
McKay suffers from spina bifida – a birth defect that occurs when the spine and spinal cord don’t form properly, according to the Mayo Clinic.
That incident was traumatic for both McKay and his grandmother Elsie Moar.
When he was 14 years old, McKay was shoved into a burning shed by some other kids.
Moar was shocked when she saw this video of her grandson.
“I just started to shake, my chest was sore, my stomach my whole thing was. I was shaking and I think I almost had a breakdown. I was too shocked at what I had seen,” she said.
In a written statement – the security firm said the Northgate mall had requested a trespass order be re-enforced to what they called a “known and habitual trespasser.”
According to the statement, security arrived and asked McKay to leave and when he did not they tried to detain him.
“The person involved resisted the arrest striking at security on multiple occasions in a resistive/assaultive manor,” a statement from 494 Security said.
When the confrontation began, two bystanders tried to intervene, one of them was Byron Linus.
“If there was an investigation they would see exactly what happened and that’s me de-escalating the situation. If I had not gotten out of that vehicle, he would have had his knee probably on Brian’s back, Brian would have been in cuffs, and Brian would have been in the back of that security car,” said Byron Linus.
The company said the situation was starting to escalate.
“Bystanders were observed approaching the incident in an escalating manner,” said the statement.
Linus shot the video on his phone and said he decided to intervene to prevent McKay from getting hurt.
494 security said an investigation was completed and the incident was deemed lawful under the Criminal Code of Canada and the Manitoba Petty Trespass Act.
APTN asked 494 if the officer would face any discipline, but 494 Security would not directly answer, saying all relevant information could be found in their statement.
Moar and McKay said they do not intend to file any charges or complaints, as they both want to move on from this experience.