Minty family takes jury's recommendations in stride
After more than a month, the coroner's inquest into the death of Douglas Minty is over.
The jury made several recommendations aimed at preventing another police shooting like the one in Elmvale five years ago that left the 59-year-old Minty dead.
But the Minty family isn't entirely satisfied with those recommendations.
“We had questions that we were hoping to get answered through the inquest, and we will still always have questions,” says Diane Pinder, Minty's sister.
Minty was developmentally delayed and. He lived with his mother Evelyn in Elmvale. She has been at the inquest every day hoping to learn more about why her son was killed.
“We knew that Doug did not have to die that night, and it's been a hard five years, and it will always be hard for me,” says Evelyn Minty
Many of the jury’s recommendations are directed at the OPP. The jury said communications operators should be better trained to handle calls involving developmentally delayed people, especially when it comes to passing along that information. The jury also suggested OPP officers get more training to help them handle vulnerable people and difficult situations.
The Minty family wanted the OPP to hold a civilian review of its policies. But the jury at the inquest didn’t make that recommendation.
“It was something that may have been of assistance in future situations but the jury didn't agree with us,” says Asha James, lawyer for the Minty family. “They did make some wonderful recommendations that will go very far to make sure Doug Minty's death was not in vain.”
The jury suggested the Ontario government develop a voluntary registry for vulnerable people that could be used in the case of an emergency. But the family says the police need to do more than have a list.
“It really comes down to developing relationships with individuals,” says Douglas Minty's brother John Minty. “A registry by itself isn't going to develop those relationships. The officers have to go and meet the people who are on the list.”
Outside of this, the family has filed a civil suit against some of police involved. As of today, the family has not decided if they will continue with that suit