A Mi’kmaq student is calling on the RCMP to take a hit-and-run incident in her home community seriously, following the not-guilty verdicts in the deaths of Tina Fontaine and Colten Boushie.
Carolyn Simon, a Carleton University student, organized an eight-kilometre justice march from the university to RCMP headquarters in Ottawa on Friday.
The message: Brady Francis’s family should not go through what the relatives of Boushie and Fontaine had to endure.
“We don’t want the person responsible to not be accountable for his action,” Simon said. “This is more to just kinda tell them to do this case fairly, to treat this case with respect and to do their jobs.”
Francis, a 22-year-old member of the Elsipogtog First Nation in New Brunswick, was killed in a hit-and-run two weeks ago.
“It just didn’t make sense that somebody like him would be taken so soon,” said Simon, who knows the Francis family. “And it’s affected a lot of people in the community because it just shows it doesn’t matter who you are we’re all not safe.”
Activist Jocelyn Wabano Iahtail said Indigenous people are collectively grieving over the verdicts in the recent Boushie and Fontaine trials.
“With Colten and Tina we reflect upon our own losses. All of this comes back again just like it was yesterday,” she said.
Boushie, a 22-year-old from Red Pheasant First Nation, was shot and killed on a Saskatchewan farm. Fontaine’s body was pulled from the Winnipeg’s Red River in August 2014. She was just 15 years old. The accused in each case walked free.
Meanwhile, the RCMP continues to investigate the death of Brady Francis.
So far, no arrests have been made.