Father and Son Seek Damages After Confrontation With TTC Officers

Crown Withdraws Charges Against Gillmans

TORONTO, Jan. 19, 2017 /CNW/ - A Toronto father and son have filed a $4 million damages suit against two transit enforcement officers and the TTC, alleging they were violently assaulted and unlawfully arrested at Union Station following an NHL game almost two years ago. Last month, all charges against Russell and Jamie Gillman were withdrawn.

"This case is about those in authority overstepping their bounds," said Michael Smitiuch, of Smitiuch Injury Law PC, one of the lawyers representing the Gillmans. "Both the Gillmans and the public deserve assurances that this sort of incident won't be repeated."

On January 29, 2015, 64-year-old Russell Gillman and his 35-year-old son Jamie were proceeding through the payment area at Union Station following a Toronto Maple Leafs game. After paying his fare, Russell Gillman accidently brushed up against transit enforcement officer Brendan Higgins. It's alleged that without warning, Higgins aggressively threw Russell Gillman against a wall, attempting to arrest him without reasonable grounds. Jamie Gillman, in an effort to assist his father, attempted to speak with Higgins, when a fight broke out between the two. It's alleged a second transit officer Jason Barber intervened, repeatedly punching Jamie Gillman, while spectators yelled for him to stop. Several months later, an onlooker posted a video of the violent confrontation on YouTube.

Russell and Jamie Gillman were both treated and released from hospital. Russell suffered an arm injury while his son Jamie suffered head and shoulder injuries and facial lacerations.

Smitiuch alleges in the Statement of Claim that the two transit enforcement officers applied excessive and unreasonable force under the circumstances. It's also alleged that the TTC allowed unqualified and inadequately trained employees to work as transit officers. On Dec. 16th, charges of assault and uttering threats were withdrawn against the Gillmans.

"We're pleased that all charges against the Gillmans have been withdrawn," said Bruce Daley, of Daley, Byers Criminal Lawyers, co-counsel for the Gillmans. "Jamie and Russell are anxious to move forward with their lives."

SOURCE Smitiuch Injury Law PC

For further information: Michael Smitiuch, mike@sil.lawyer, 416-621-1551; Bruce Daley, bruce@daleybyers.com, 416-864-0246; Danna O'Brien, danna@obriencommunications.ca, 416-500-0699

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