Look for a verdict in the aggravated assault case against Winnipeg Police Constable Ryan Law (30) some time in late February 2014.
Esteemed defense attorney Richard Wolson delivered his closing arguments yesterday picking apart allegations levelled against the Officer by an admitted Police hater with over fifty (57) criminal convictions on his record.
Career criminal Henry Lavallee (49) accused Law of viciously kicking him in the abdomen in a Public Safety Building holding cell on November 22, 2008 after he’d been collared for breaking into a vehicle in the Exchange District.
Wolson suggested Lavallee lied as many twenty-five (25) times during his sworn testimony.
After witnessing Lavallee’s direct and cross-examination, I would have to consider Wolson’s assessment of Lavallee’s testimony to be somewhat generous. It wasn’t long after the cross-examination started that Lavallee was forced to disavow himself from many of the assertions he made during his direct evidence.
He was forced to admit he really wasn’t the quiet, polite, respectable man he tried to portray himself as to Court of Queens Bench Justice Joan Mckelvey. The real Henry Lavallee is a Police hating, confrontational man who likes to spit in Police Officers faces when they frequently arrest him.
He was also forced to admit he grossly exaggerated claims that Police assault him and fail to read him his rights every time he gets arrested.
It got better.
Lavalle cracked under cross-examination and essentially admitted he called Constable Law a “bitch” at the time of his arrest. “Maybe he is a bitch,” Lavallee said. “Maybe you are too,” he said glaring at Wolson.
Alas, the true nature of Henry Lavallee was revealed. A vile, aggressive career criminal and habitual liar who’s prepared to say anything to advance his cause.
Independent Crown Prosecutor Kerry UnRuh questions why Lavallee would frame Constable Law for an injury he suffered before coming into Police custody? UnRuh suggests the defence theory is not credible and doesn’t make sense.
If UnRuh truly believes what he says he’s either extraordinarily naive or lacks “practical” experience.
The truth is, criminals like Lavallee make false accusations against Police Officers all the time. It’s part of their culture. The Law Enforcement Review agency has investigated hundreds of false allegations made against Police Officers over the years. The majority of complaints come from criminals looking to deflect responsibility for their own criminal behaviour.
In 1990, I found myself on the wrong end of criminal charges after an habitual offender with over one hundred (100) convictions on his record levelled allegations of Assault Cause Bodily Harm against me and two (2) other Officers. The Crown subsequently stayed the charges after Judge Howard Collerman ruled the allegations of Police brutality were fabricated.
In this case, UnRuh should have had the courage to stay the charges against Law the moment Lavallee stepped down from the witness-box. Not one person in that court room could’ve believed a thing that came out of Lavallee’s rancid mouth.
Can there really be any likelihood of a conviction with such incredulous, jaded testimony?
I can’t see it in this case.