Family of Rocky Lonechild questions his arrest
REGINA -- The family of Rocky Lonechild stood outside the provincial court house on Monday morning, saying the officers who arrested him should be held to account.
Lonechild was appearing in court by video for charges. The family said the officers who arrested Lonechild should be the ones appearing in court.
Lonechild was arrested by four Regina police officers on December 13, 2019. The arrest was captured on camera. The video shows a man running and then the four officers taking him down. The family of Lonechild said he is the man in the video and that Lonechild sustained broken ribs and a punctured lung from the arrest.
“I couldn’t believe that was him,” said Lawrence Bigeagle, Lonechild’s father. “I honesty thought, when I first watched, I honestly thought we were watching the cops kill somebody, but we didn’t know that was our son until a couple days later.”
The family was joined by others outside the court house Monday to call for the officers in this incident to be charged.
Bigeagle said Regina Police Service Chief Evan Bray should fire the one police officer and suspend the others.
Bray commented about the incident after it happened in December of 2019. Bray alleged Lonechild was a suspect in an armed robbery and he was high on meth.
The Regina Police Service also commented about the incident on Monday.
“The officers involved in this matter have not been disciplined or reassigned," it said. "Our police service will not be taking action against the officers prematurely or presupposing the conclusion of the PCC’s investigation; we will await the outcome of the Public Complaints Commission process."
The Public Complaints Commission said its investigation into this incident is now complete and the files are now with Public Prosecutions. Prosecutions will review the investigation and make recommendations if necessary.
"This video of Rocky Lonechild being physically assaulted and damaged is clear, and there's no need to wait for a public complaints investigation,” Bob Hughes with the Saskatchewan Coalition Against Racism said. “Chief Bray should have taken action and he should take action now."
Lonechild is facing charges of unlawful possession of methamphetamine from December 13, 2019. A trial date was set for him on Monday of July 27.