Montreal man alleges racial profiling, wants apology after police barge into Super Bowl party, he says
MONTREAL -- Police officers barged into an apartment on Super Bowl Sunday, threw a man on the floor and pointed guns at its occupants, a Cotes-des-Neiges man has said.
Five Montreal police officers knocked on Taylor Zamor's door as he made snacks for his friends during a Super Bowl party, Zamor, who is black, told CTV News. When he opened his door, an officer yelled at him. "He said, 'hands up. Don't move,'" Zamor said.
The officers barged into his apartment, guns drawn, Zamor continued. They threw him to the floor, told him they were looking for suspects in a nearby stabbing and that two black men had possibly just run into Zamor's apartment building on Queen Mary Road.
They held Zamor, and his guests -- who were mostly black, in their 30s -- at gunpoint while they searched his apartment, he said. The experience was demeaning, Zamor explained. "The police, I expect you to protect me. If there is a danger in the building, protect me from whatever danger it is. But instead, I was thrown to the floor, had an officer on my back. It just made me feel low," he said.
A downstairs neighbour confirmed that there was a heavy police presence in the building on Super Bowl Sunday, but they couldn't confirm what had happened inside Zamor's apartment.
Eventually, Zamor said, the police realized they were in the wrong apartment and left. "So I ask him, the supervisor, 'excuse me you're just going to leave, you're not going to apologize for anything thing here?' and he responded to me: 'why?'" Zamor said.
Montreal police would not comment on the case, citing confidentiality reasons.
When the officer held Zamor on the ground, Zamor's back was injured, he said, preventing him from working. He alleges the officers racially profiled him and wants an apology.
Fo Niemi, executive director of the Center for Research-Action on Race Relations (CRARR), is helping him file an official complaint.
"One wrong thing," Niemi said, "and the firearms could have gone off, and somebody could have gotten shot."