Blue Line

Toronto police chief apologizes after protester handed coffee by officer

January 8, 2024  By The Canadian Press

Jan. 8, 2024, Toronto, Ont. – Toronto’s police chief is apologizing after an officer was filmed handing coffee to a protester at a pro-Palestinian demonstration.

Chief Myron Demkiw didn’t specifically reference the incident in his statement but said questions had been raised about a particular interaction on Saturday between officers and a person at the Avenue Road bridge demonstration.

In a video circulated on social media by lawyer Caryma Sa’d, a demonstrator says officers agreed to deliver the Tim Hortons coffee box and cups on behalf of people police had stopped from joining the protest.

The chief’s statement says,”Whatever the intent, the impact has been to cause concern and confusion and for that I am sorry”


The recurrent demonstration at the Avenue Road bridge over the 401 Highway has been criticized by some city councillors and Jewish groups for its location in a neighbourhood with a large Jewish population.

Police have shut down the bridge at least three other times citing the safety of demonstrators, counter-demonstrators and passing traffic.

In his statement, Demkiw says he ordered a review of Saturday’s events.

“Let me be clear and unequivocal: our commitment to keeping our city’s Jewish community safe is unwavering,” he said in a statement, posted on Sunday to X, formerly known as Twitter. “We are doing everything we can in the locations that have been targeted for demonstration to uphold and enforce the law.”

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