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Police officer keeps her cool as Brampton teens attack

By Joe Warmington, Toronto Sun

Turns out there’s not just one Peel Regional Police officer who was a superstar in the wild melee outside a high school here, but two.

One was in uniform and on duty. The other was not in uniform and en route for a shift.

Both deserve medals or at least a pat on the back. That is what they get here today. Even if we are not officially allowed to know who they are.

Most of the public see an attack on one police officer as an attack on all of them.

It was all caught in a wild cellphone video that went viral.

The incident occurred Tuesday at St. Marguerite d’Youville Secondary School where two young women, ages 15 and 16, were escorted from the school when all hell breaks loose.

The video begins showing the officer on her knees in the snow and being subjected to what appears to be a barrage of punches. Despite being in distress the officer manages to hang onto the suspect who is clearly assaulting her. She tries to use pepper spray and is managing to hold on to the accused until a second girl comes from behind and pushes her off. The first girl starts to run away but the officer calmly walks forward with an eye on the suspect who is tracked down by another person.

“That was an off duty officer from 21 Division who was on his way to work,” said Peel Police Association president Paul Black. “He ran in there to help the officer.”

Meanwhile, the original officer continued doing her job.

“Incredible,” said Black. “She was very professional and never lost her composure.”

“She was very professional,” added Sgt. Matt Small.

She was the talk of policing across the country.

“The video shows a very ugly incident of young people acting out of control,” said Associate Defence Minister and policing legend Julian Fantino. “As a parent, grandparent and former police officer I am disturbed by the apparent assault of the police officer. The officer deserves praise for keeping her cool.”

By doing so and not escalating the incident the former chief of police in Toronto, York Region and London and former Commissioner of the OPP said this Peel cop made all police officers proud. “I also commend the timely actions of the off-duty officer,” said Fantino. “This incident serves to highlight the great people we have in policing.”

Bur this officer does not want accolades.

“She is attached to the school and cares a lot about the kids,” said one of her colleagues. “The last thing she wanted was for anybody to be hurt.”

Black said she felt she just did her job.

“She is a very private person and she was also back on the job (Wednesday),” he said.

But it the whole thing could have gone badly.

“She did very well to not escalate her use of force,” said crime specialist Ross McLean, a former Toronto Police officer. “She kept calm and kept control.”

In the end the teens were charged with assaulting a police officer, obstructing a police officer and trespassing. They will make a court appearance in youth court on March 17.

Many students were embarrassed their loved community officer was put in this position.

“It was shocking,” said student Austin Coyne, 17, who witnessed it. “She is such a good person who knows everybody’s name and is always smiling.”

Coyne identified her to Toronto Sun Photographer Michael Peake and me but with neither Peel Regional Police nor the association being prepared to confirm it, and her not wanting her name released, we decided to keep the officer’s identity as a mystery for now.

Same goes for the off duty officer who also helped save the day.

Your identities may not be known to the public but your positive deeds are.



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