Twice Tased Sault Business Man Pursues $2 Million Lawsuit Against OPP

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When Dan Knox sat down to lunch at his kitchen table with his mom and his daughter, Sherry Cole, on June 11th 2014, he was feeling pretty good. As Dan, owner of Tree Men & a Chainsaw, sank his teeth into the juicy deliciousness of Muio’s restaurant’s broasted chicken, he had no clue that the accompanying coleslaw would never pass his lips. In less than an hour Dan would be twice tased in the back, shin raked, arrested and slammed into the back of an OPP cruiser. But his adventure would not be shared alone. Sherry, along with Dan’s son, Harrison Knox, and Dan’s employee, Calvin Lynn, would all find themselves handcuffed and held behind bars at the OPP’s Sault Ste. Marie detachment that spring afternoon.

*****

Editor’s Note: The series of events that have led up to the recent filing of a Statement of Claim (attached below) initiating a lawsuit against the OPP are anything but simple. Various interviews, legal documents, photographs and video have been resourced to parse together the following article. Statements made about the events on June 11th, 2014 by the Northern Hoot have been informed by: admissions made by the individuals who those statements are about; or were corroborated in reports where statements are agreed upon by all parties. Those directly quoted below provided their comments to the Northern Hoot. Sparing the reader from the he-said-she-said merry-go-round, this piece attempts to focus on the broader issues of this conundrum that encompass vigilantism, police accountability and transparency, and media accountability. Efforts were made to obtain comment from the OPP but none were received by the Northern Hoot at the time of publication.

Early Tree Men days. Chopping trees with Dr. Roberta Bondar. Dan pictured in the back. Left front, a young Harrison.

Early Tree Men days. Chopping trees with Dr. Roberta Bondar. Dan pictured in the back. Left front, a young Harrison.

At 6’2” and 250 lbs., Dan is a presence that naturally commands a certain respect when he walks into a room. “I’m a big man,” acknowledges Dan. “But there’s absolutely no reason to be afraid of me.”

He admits that in his younger days his past was- well, a bit colourful but after meeting the love of his life in 1982, who he tragically lost only three years ago, he was inspired to a productive lifestyle that meted out a successful career. He spent the first 25 years of a 40 year career with the Algoma Central Rail working as a conductor and a brakeman. In the mid-90’s, while transitioning from his position with the ACR, Dan established his business, Tree Men & a Chainsaw. His daughter and son, as well as extended family, have all wielded the Tree Men chainsaw. Dan is fond of referring to his family as a “working family”.

Dan wiped off his sticky fingers when the phone rang that afternoon and picked up the phone. Harrison was on the other end and what he was saying had Dan boggled and concerned. Dan had sent out a four man crew to handle a job- his son, his nephew -Kenneth Knox, his grandson and Sherry’s son- Daniel Campbell and his employee -Calvin Lynn. Harrison explained to his father that the crew had been driving to the job in two vehicles and that they had stopped at the abandoned Esso in Heyden to pile into one vehicle to attend the next work site together. While making the switch a Ford SUV hauling a trailer and a black SUV had blocked the crew’s exit from the parking lot. Dan called the OPP for assistance but before he could head out the door to see what was happening for himself, Harrison called again saying that the SUV pulling the trailer had rammed into the side of his truck popping the front passenger tire. Dan grabbed a spare tire, Sherry grabbed a clipboard to collect information for insurance and they headed out to the site. Dan drove while Sherry called 911 to inquire if OPP had arrived on scene and was advised to pull over and not proceed to the incident area.

“I could not understand them telling me that I could not go and help my family and my business on the side of the highway,” Dan remarked. “It was outrageous.”

Dan and Sherry continued on to the abandoned gas station.

So, what led to the crew being barricaded on the side of the highway? Meet driver of the black SUV -Wendy Grenier and her passenger, daughter Cindy Wagner. Also meet driver of the SUV hauling the trailer -John Vanderloo Sr. and his passenger, son John Vanderloo Jr.

Both drivers were travelling north as were the two vehicles carrying the Tree Men crew. Vanderloo and his son were between both Tree Men vehicles and Grenier was last in the line-up. Grenier and Wagner observed the Tree Men vehicle behind Vanderloo, driven by Calvin, pull into the oncoming lane to pass the Vanderloos. The Vanderloos, Grenier and Wagner would later tell the OPP that the pass forced an oncoming vehicle onto the side of the road and Vanderloo slowed down his vehicle and pulled far right to provide room for the Tree Men truck to pass. The Tree Men truck moved into the proper lane.

The Tree Men vehicles proceeded to the abandoned Esso and pulled in. The Vanderloos turned into the abandoned Esso looking for gas not realizing there was none to be found. Grenier and Wagner pulled into the Esso to detain the Tree Men by blocking the front exit and then called the police. The dispatcher advised Grenier not to follow the Tree Men vehicle. Wagner exited the vehicle and in her own words recalls saying to Calvin, “what is wrong with you, you almost caused a head on collision, you’re not going anywhere, we have called the cops”. Grenier in her own words said of her daughter “my daughter was mouthing off to them a bit”. Wagner then approached the Vanderloos and in her own words recalls saying to Vanderloo Sr., “We are blocking them from the front. Pull up and block them from the back.” Vanderloo complied with Wagner’s direction and in his own words says, “I then drove away from the gas pump and directly behind the red pick-up truck”.

From this point accounts from the Vanderloos, Grenier, Wagner and the Tree Men crew are varied – a real typical he-said-she-said circus. What all parties agree on is that the Vanderloos, Grenier and Wagner deliberately barricaded the Tree Men vehicles and what can be seen by photo evidence taken by the police, the Tree Men vehicle took a significant amount of damage to the passenger side including a punctured tire. What could have been handled as a traffic infraction by the OPP turned into an escalated situation that now included property damage, accusations of physical assault, multiple arrests and tarnished reputations.

Left to right, Daniel Campbell, Dan Knox, Sherry Knox Cole, Harrison Knox.

Left to right, Daniel Campbell, Dan Knox, Sherry Knox Cole, Harrison Knox.

In Canada any person can make a citizen’s arrest if they catch someone “in the act of committing a crime, or escaping from and freshly pursued by persons who have lawful authority to arrest that person, in order to lawfully make a citizen’s arrest”. In these instances, the citizen arrest must be made at the time of the criminal offence. However, if the criminal offence occurs on or in relation to one’s property a citizen arrest can be made at time the crime is being committed or within a reasonable period of time after having found that person committing that crime.

Some legal observers worry that the power of citizen arrest could lead to dangerous situations, violence, false accusations or forms of vigilantism.

Was the pass made by 21 year old Calvin a crime or an example of lousy, inexperienced driving? A judge would later decide that Calvin’s pass, though maybe risky, was not a crime. Grenier and Wagner decided otherwise, taking matters into their own hands and barricaded the Tree Men’s property preventing the Tree Men from leaving with their vehicles. Vanderloo Sr. willingly conspired with Grenier and Wagner using his SUV and trailer as a blockade.

Davin Charney, Charney Law, represents Dan Knox’s lawsuit. Of the conduct of the Vanderloos, Grenier and Wagner, Charney believes it was “excessive” and “unlawful”. “Under the circumstances it was not lawful for them to make a citizen arrest because they didn’t find someone committing a criminal offence. In this situation they were reacting to the driving incident. Bad driving doesn’t necessarily mean a criminal offence has taken place. But the big problem is that they acted unlawfully and excessively and they escalated the situation way beyond the simple driving matter that it could have been. What they could have done was made note of the license plate and contacted the police. That’s what most people would do under those circumstances. There was no reason to barricade those vehicles in. It was those people that escalated the situation but the Knox family paid the price.”

Both Grenier and Vanderloo admit that the incident at the Esso was out of control. Remarked Grenier of her decision to pursue the Tree Men to the Esso, “There could have been an accident. It scared the heck out of me and my daughter and so I did what I did. I figured there was something wrong with that driver. I figured he was drunk or something and to avoid him from killing somebody else I thought I would stop him and report it to the police. I certainly didn’t expect it to turn into the situation that it did. There was no need for that. I never thought it would escalate the way that it did.”

Vanderloo remarked that the entire incident at the Esso was “unreal” and “the whole thing snowballed” adding, “Something needed to be done so it didn’t happen again. They couldn’t be left unpunished for doing what they did. They needed to be talked to by authorities. I was just trying to be a good Samaritan.”

Shortly after 1 p.m. the OPP began arriving on scene- Constable Luigi Bruni, Constable Mario Posteraro, Constable Peter Van Den Diepstraten, Constable Keith Nicolle, and a bit later –Sergeant Ken Spahr and Sergeant Mike Wreggitt. All, with the exception of Sergeant Wreggitt, are named in the Statement of Claim.

The Claim provides that the Knox family aims to sue the OPP for $2 million. $1.5 million is set out for general damages that include negligence, assault, battery, false arrest, false imprisonment, trespass to property, misfeasance of public office and malicious breach of public duty. An additional $500,000 is sought for breaches of sections 7, 8 and 9 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and for aggravated and punitive damages.

On scene, the officers spoke with the Vanderloos, Grenier and Wagner and within a few minutes determined that they had enough information to arrest and charge Calvin and Harrison. Calvin was charged with dangerous driving as well as resisting a peace officer. Harrison was charged with dangerous driving and assault. Calvin’s charges were significantly decreased by a judge from a dangerous charge to a minor traffic violation and his assault charge was dropped. All of Harrison’s charges were entirely dropped.

Harrison and Dan.

Harrison and Dan.

Charney believes the police investigation was one-sided. Of the Vanderloos’, Grenier’s and Wagner’s participation in the incident that day Charney remarked, “They barricaded the Tree Men employees and that should have caused the police some concern right from the start. They should have questioned them as to their motives because they essentially engaged in vigilante justice. Usually that kind of activity irks police. The police don’t want civilians doing the work that they’re supposed to be doing. The police seemed so intent on taking action against the employees and later Dan Knox. The investigation was myopic.”

By the time Dan and Sherry finally arrived Calvin and Harrison were both cuffed and sitting in separate police cruisers.

“I saw Harrison in the back of the police cruiser that I had parked beside,” explains Dan. “He was motioning me over. So I went over to open the door to see what was going on. As soon I opened the door I was hit with an incredible blast of heat, considerably hotter than the outside air, which was itself rather hot. But before I had a chance to say anything to Harrison someone screamed from behind for me to get away from the car. It was Constable Nicolle. So right away I backed away and started walking towards Nicolle who was comfortably in the shade interviewing these ladies that had detained my Tree Men crew. Meanwhile, my son was cooking in the backseat of Constable Nicolle’s metal oven. Harrison did not get out of the oven, staying where he was. Calvin was also basting in sweat and thoroughly done by this time. I calmly walked towards Constable Nicolle to see what was going on. I had not taken more than two steps and he says ‘get on the ground, you’re under arrest’. And I say ‘for what? I didn’t do anything’. As soon as we get within arm’s reach he grabs my arm and I told him ‘don’t touch me’ and then he says ‘you’re under arrest for assault’. And then I hear a guy behind me saying ‘get on the ground’ and it’s Constable Posteraro with his taser in my face and I’m asking him ‘what for’ and that’s where the video starts.”

 

“Some people are going to watch the video and say ‘well if he didn’t resist that wouldn’t have happened’,” remarked Charney. “People need to know that you are lawfully allowed to resist arrest when the police are doing something that is illegal like unlawfully arresting you. Also, the taser- you can see it being used. It’s kind of a cliché to ‘shoot someone in the back’ but that’s what happened. He turned his back on the police. He’s not obviously of any danger. He’s not trying to flee. He’s just trying to not be arrested. He was trying to engage and talk with the officers and then he got shot in the back. People need to appreciate how dangerous the use of a taser is.”

Seconds before Dan is tased.

Seconds before Dan is tased. Left to right, Constable Posteraro pointing the taser, Dan Knox, Constable Nicolle.

A report released in 2013 indicates that 9,174 tasers are in use in Canada. Between 1998 – 2013, 33 taser deaths have been reported.

Knox was tased twice in the back. The second time he was tased he was on the ground with the probes still attached to his back. “It’s really shitty,” remarked Dan of his experience. “Like a heart attack. You just shut right down. I felt completely helpless. I don’t recommend it for anyone. All they wanted to do was subdue me from the moment I was there. I know I’m big but I’d never strike an officer. I’m not an idiot. There’s no reason to be afraid of me. I’m a business owner, a father, a grandfather. They have to be able to figure some shit out- they’re making over a 100 grand a year for crying out loud.”

Dan was arrested and led to the police cruiser where he hesitated trying to fit in the confined quarters of the backseat. “I got out of the dirt, cuffed criminally tight and was led to another cruiser oven. I’m trying to figure out how to accommodate my 6’2” frame into a space that allowed for 5” or 6” of leg room when someone starts kicking me in the back of the ankles as hard and fast as they can, while officer Posteraro and Nicolle hold me in place. These guys are just too good to each other.”

Reports described the force used to persuade Dan into the vehicle as ‘shin rakes’. “Go figure,” said Dan. “Where I come from that’s called a ‘boot fucking’. After they finished beating the shit out of me this little guy gets into the front of the crusier, turns around and says to me ‘I thought lumberjacks were supposed to be tough’. Can you imagine that? I informed him that we were, in fact, arborists or urban foresters but I did not convey that I was pretty certain that my dear daughter would likely hammer him had she the right to defend herself.”

As Dan was sitting in the cruiser he had a front row seat as Sherry was taken into custody. Sherry, who was recording the incident with her cell phone, can be observed on the video alternately encouraging her father to do as the officers were ordering and questioning the officer’s proclamation of arrest. She was next to Dan when he was first tased. When Constable Posteraro tased Dan a second time she pushed him away from her father.

Video catches the tip of Sherry's right hand as she pushes Constable Posteraro away from Dan.

Video catches the tip of Sherry’s right hand as she pushes Constable Posteraro away from Dan. Harrison is also pictured on the right. He stepped out of the cruiser when Dan was tased.

In the Statement of Claim, Charney writes: Sherry acted lawfully to prevent further use of the taser against Knox. Her conduct was reasonable, necessary, and for the lawful purpose of defending Knox against excessive use of force by police.

At point 29 and 30 in the Statement of Claim, it is indicated that: Sherry was grabbed, pushed around, and then bent over the hood of a police cruiser by Constable Van Den Deipstraten, Posteraro and Nicolle. She was handcuffed to the back. The handcuffs were incredibly tight and Sherry was injured. Sherry’s phone was knocked out of her hand during her arrest. One of the Defendant police officers deliberately and maliciously stepped on the phone and destroyed it. This officer destroyed material evidence and acted with the intention of doing so.

Dan’s charges- two counts of assaulting a peace officer and two counts of resisting arrest, and Sherry’s charges of obstructing a peace officer and assaulting a peace officer, would later be dropped by a judge in the Ontario Court of Justice.

Damage incurred to Tree Men vehicle.

Damage incurred to Tree Men vehicle.

Sherry’s son, then 18 year old Daniel Campbell, having witnessed the incident that caused damage to the Tree Men vehicle had begun taking photographs, as directed by his mom, for insurance purposes. As the events spiraled out of control that afternoon Daniel continued to collect images. Daniel was advised to attend the OPP station later that day. He thought he was going to be asked to provide a statement. Instead, as reports indicate, Constable Nicolle advised Daniel that taking pictures of the Vanderloo and Wagner vehicle could be interpreted as criminal harassment and Daniel was pressured to delete all the days photo’s from his cell phone.

Perhaps it is most poignant that the judge’s final decision to drop all charges against the Knox family was thanks to the efforts of the Vanderloos cell phone video of the tasing incident. Such occurrences in policing behaviour are becoming more common. Video’s captured on cell phones or surveillance camera’s turn up presenting pretty indisputable chain of events footage. In Dan’s situation various accounts indicate that he was acting like a “madman” “cursing” “aggressive” and kicked the officers after he had been tased. The video demonstrates otherwise.

Charney believes that the prevalence of video and social media has not exposed a new trend in policing but rather has captured the realities of policing culture in Canada. Of the approach employed by the OPP on June 11th, 2014, Charney thinks it’s anything but extraordinary.

“What we saw with this incident isn’t an example of cops that are ‘rogue officers’. This is a systemic problem. This isn’t one incident in one place that we are seeing excessive force or a misguided, negligent investigation,” commented Charney. “The use of excessive force is part of police culture. That’s how they are trained and that’s how the culture within the police force directs them. They are trained to use force much more so than being trained not to use force. They should be relying more on their abilities to negotiate, deescalate, to treat people humanely and with dignity. That would avoid the escalation which sometimes leads to tragic consequences.”

Dan and Sherry on the family property.

Dan and Sherry on the family property.

One of the most controversial issues in Canada –as in all of North America, is the use of police force against racial minorities. However, there is little empirical evidence regarding the use of force by police in Canada and whether or not force is applied against minorities with greater frequency.

Publicized shootings in Ontario and Quebec including Sammy Yatim, Allen Gosset, Sophia Cook, Dudley George, Jeffrey Roedica, Lester Donaldson, Buddy Evans, Wade Lawson and Marlon Neal, raise the point that closer examination of the use of police force is overdue and also indicates an uncomfortable level of comfort in the use of force among police.

As Charney points out during his interview, there is not one entity in Ontario or Canada that keeps statistics of the number of people killed by police. “That’s all part of the problem,” says Charney. “Lack of police accountability gives police the license to use force, sometimes unlawfully.”

America may be slightly ahead of Canada when it comes to addressing the practice of excessive police force. The Obama administration recently released reform recommendations that “encourages officers to work harder to explain why they are being stopped, questioned or arrested. The report implies that more training, diversity and communication will lead to enhanced police community relations, more effective crime control and greater police legitimacy.”

Dan is pretty reflective about the nations policing culture stating, “Much has been made recently that police brutality no longer consists of simple, isolated incidents but, rather, endemic throughout Canada and the U.S. Our freedom is a threat, under siege from the same people sworn to uphold it. Locally we are in trouble because it’s not merely a few bad apples, it’s the whole damn bushel of Sault Ste. Marie and area’s OPP. Top to bottom, bottom to top!”

In Sault Ste. Marie, police have a special relationship with the mainstream media. The release of names and personal information of people charged by police to the media is hardly a new thing. In fact it’s getting pretty old and some publications are refusing to participate in the naming and shaming game.

Dan was quite aware of the police practice as well as the media’s eagerness to pick up police logs and publish the information as newsworthy items. Before leaving the station after his release the evening of June 11th, 2014, he begged the supervising officer to keep what had happened out of the news. Later that evening the details of the day hit the local media as well as the next day and the day after that. Details of the family’s arrest even ran on a local radio station parallel to their own Tree Men ad.

Harrison and Sherry at their Knoxes annual family and friend skate December 26th, 2015.

Harrison and Sherry at their private annual family and friend skate December 26th, 2015.

In the first week following the publicized arrest Dan absorbed $10,000 worth of cancelled jobs and an unknown amount of bucks from people just not calling at all. More so Dan’s reputation as was his family’s, was tarnished and the experience was humiliating. Add to that Dan’s frustration from not being able to tell his side of the story –“the truth”, he says. “In fact I wish that it would have gone to court because we could have spoken. We would have done well in court.”

Dan has been haunted by the portrayal of his family in the media. “To have my kids assaulted by the police and then lied about… I had to watch Van Den Diepstraten put my crying daughter in the back of his SUV after he and his cohorts assaulted her three or four feet away from me while I helplessly watched. And Harrison is gentle and gentlemanly. He is the youngest certified arborist in Canadian history. Apprentice at 13 years old, crew leader and foreman at 20 years old and college instructor at 23 years old.” There’s a tremble in Dan’s voice. “So many people think we are pieces of shit. We’re not. This has worn me out so much.”

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  • Tadaaaaaaaaa

    he was instructed by the officers to get on the ground..he didn’t do it…he resisted arrest and therefore reaped his own consequences..period…he doesn’t deserve a dime..stop trying to make a bad situation that YOU contributed to into a money maker..the rest of us don’t wanna pay for you not being able to respect the law.

  • Bawk Bawkbagawk

    and yet, here is this judge saying different.

  • Your a goof

    Opinions are like assholes. Everybody has one. Lol

  • Snowgirl

    It all started with a family of hot heads that didn’t like the way someone was driving (in their opinion). THEY should’ve been the ones on the ground and in handcuffs!! They unlawfully blocked someone in and damaged property. Not the first time SSM cops pull a heavy (because they were intimidated by this man’s size) and not the first time they destroyed evidence either. All this man was trying to do was look for answers. Even when they told him to get on the ground. I’d be asking why too…and then to be tased on top of it. I call bullshit!

  • Fedor Emelianenko

    police were in the right… act like idiots and thats what happens… dont block people in when u can just get a license plate

  • Jennifer Dawn Mathison

    Agreed.

  • Justin Jones

    Fedor wannabe…. you’re an absolute idiot. You either didn’t read the article or you’re just incompetent at understanding simple things. The ones who blocked them in aren’t the ones arrested…. None of the people involved in the initial incident are tazed. Go back and get someone to read it to you with picture diagrams so you can actually understand what happened.. And don’t hide behind a fake name so nobody realizes who the uneducated fool is.

  • MarkT

    Pretty awful how the Knox family had no voice for such a long time. This happens way too much in this town. Glad to see the entire truth. Got to be honest though the police action isn’t that shocking. Been that way in this town for a long time. And pretty interesting that the vigilante’s got away with holding those guys hostage and the cops did nothing about that.

  • Keith Busby

    Wow, turning his back on the officer was construed as assault? How, was the officers pride hurt or just his feelings? I thought police officers were supposed to be tough. This is a perfect example of how comfortable police have become with using violence instead of communication to resolve a situation. This abuse of their authority is becoming more and more common, and creates a vicious circle. As the clear evidence of these abuses become public knowledge and the videos go viral, respect for the uniform and office decrease and so then does their authority. When someone then rightfully questions their actions or authority, they feel threatened and react with more violence, further tarnishing their own image.
    Any officer allowed to use force in the execution of their duties should be required by law to have a body cam recording the need for such force and be held personally accountable for any use of excessive force. How can we possibly respect police and appreciate their efforts to enforce the law when we see them repeatedly getting away with blatantly breaking the laws they claim to be enforcing?

  • bigspecks

    There must have been another reason. Can not see this happening without some other reason ..disturbing .

  • danno2257

    Ware blind or just dumb?

  • danno2257

    Bullying and cowards that’s these guys.

  • danno2257

    Wake up this is the real world.

  • Harold Thompson

    fucking pigs all need a shot in the face bullies with badges just bitches the whole lot of them

  • MarkT

    Did you even read the article? A judge of the Ontario Court Justice dropped all the charges.

  • James

    Yet when you are in need of help or anything they are the first people you call … Easy to hide behind a computer screen.

  • MarkT

    I wouldn’t generalize to that degree but in this instance there was definitely inappropriate actions by the cops and there should be follow through. And the vigilantes pumped up the situation.

  • danno2257

    Should Dan have kissed their asses well he was down? Did you watch the video know one should be treated this way and police need to be trained to deal with these situation fair and respectful to all,not provoke or pick sides that’s what the courts are for.

  • Gail Gruyters

    This incident clearly shows lack of intellectual insight amongst all of these police constables involved that very day, and shame on them. Wake up people. Thankyou to Mr. Charney for exposing the truth about the police brutality that runs rampant here and across Ontario. THIS was a brutal and unfortunate incident that could have resulted in the death of Mr. D. Knox. “There is not one entity in Ontario or Canada that keeps statistics of the number of people killed by police.” Yes people, TASERS DO KILL. Mr. Vanderloo added: ““Something needed to be done so it didn’t happen again. They couldn’t be left unpunished for doing what they did. They needed to be talked to by authorities. I was just trying to be a good Samaritan.” Wow, Mr. Vanderloo. So, in your own words you are telling me that being a good “Samaritan” means “punishing” /ramming your vehicle into another mans truck, after barricading them and taking their trucks hostage? Is that what you teach your children too, Mr. and Mrs. Vanderloo? I am hoping that Mr. D. Knox is granted compensation to the fullest extent, because he clearly deserves it.

  • Bill Berry

    I KNOW FOR A FACT how they stall they even sent the unions goons threatening me round and round we go been going on since 2011 http://christopherdiarmani.com/4714/police/abuse-of-police-authority/alberta-sheriff-thomas-bounds-taking-insensitivity-to-an-all-new-low/

  • acadianeh

    This is another in a long stream of assaults, and even killings by the OPP. They are an out-of-control heavily armed police force who have become so politicized that they even ran attack ads in the last provincial election. They need to be disbanded.

  • danno2257

    I was threatened on my front steps and the cop told me he wasn’t going to listen to a word I had to say .Thats how many act and stick together .

  • superior87

    You don’t have to do everything a police officer says if there is no lawful justification for it.

    Stop appealing to authority. This is how they get unchecked power.

  • Garry Firth

    why do they ask him to get on the ground ?

  • boater69871

    Steffanie Petroni..You must be a hard core liberal. “the police Cruiser is an oven” Gee, I wonder how a police officer manages to sit in an oven for 12 hour shift?

    BTW,

    I am in no way condoning use of violence by police officers. BUT when an officer of law says to you as video shows at:

    7 seconds Get on the ground!
    11 seconds Get on the ground!
    At this point he should have been put face first into the dirt by the OPP and handcuffed not let walking away and controlling the situation.
    16 seconds Get on the ground!
    17 seconds Get on the ground!
    20 seconds Step back!
    31 seconds Get on the ground!
    Then tasered!
    44 keeps resisting after tasering Get on the ground!
    So what happened before to make OPP officer draw his Taser? (this is not on video as its already drawn.)

    So, the first time a Cop says put your hands up or get on the ground.and has a weapon drawn, you can bet your rear end that i will get on the ground or put my hands up. These Cops put there life on the line every day for us and have a split second to make choices. They don’t always deal with the nicest people either. It is real easy to sit back and say well we should have done this or that after a altercation. Unfortunately, this individual was acting like he didn’t recognize the officers at the scene. His daughter wasn’t helping much other than yelling profanity at them . Nothing a bar of soap wouldn’t fix.

    So lets all feel bad for this poor guy but maybe remember to do what your told when OPP tell you too and let the courts sort it out. Do what police say and let our soft liberal judges sort it out and reduce all fines.

  • stormybc

    Lived in the Sault for 20+ years and finally left 21 years ago. I see the OPP have’t changed at all.

  • Mike Franco

    The Knox family are nothing but redneck hillbillies that aren’t getting anything cuz they are trash..also the editor is a criminal herself..got arrested for stealing. .lmao..if this was in the states both of the scumbags would of been shot dead..the crack heads that are against police and have a records always hate cops..watch the video and learn. ..Dan Knox is a bully, known to police..he puts his hand and hands in his pocket, the officer didn’t even say take your hands out of your pockets…in the states he would of been shot the moment he did..cops would of stormed him..his white trash daughter would and should of got more for assaulting an officer..in the video dan raises his fist to strike the officer when he was against the truck, again his life would of been over..he was not complying. .when they say get on the ground you get your ass on the ground, they asked for it..also, the victims that were involved were first harassed. .that affidavit made is a complete lie..the treemen came at them to fight..so before you low life, crackheads supporting the media and the backlash about police brutality, go watch it again, or how about you move to the the US and get your white trash button shot from the cops there..and when you need help, don’t bother calling the sault or opp for help because they are not coming..the story is fabricated, they made threats, and the editor that wrote this article is friends with the family and the stupid comments made from friends…I have heard stories upon stories of these white trash rednecks and the way they conduct business..Repeatable company!!! LMAO. .Please..they should be out of business, oh I forgot they are suing bcuz they need money..and when the public or low life’s that don’t know the actual story and more about Dan Knox and his temper, threats made after , then shut your mouth!! They are not getting a penny in court!!!! His daughter should of got an ass whooping, hard!! From an actual American cop abusing his badge!! They did not comply, when they were told to back away or get on the ground!!! Wake UP!!!!

  • Dan Knox

    boater 69871 btw you are condoning violence by the police. one is not required to follow an unlawfull police command.btw no one cares that you would go down on command,you are all ready sleeping with them.btw these cops do not put their life on the line for us.they put our lives on the line.btw they had more than a split second to decide to assault and torture my family,then lie about it.btw my family are the nicest people.btw I did see these corrupt men for what they are.btw my daughter was trying to deescalate the situation,and only got loud when these bullies shot me in the back..btw this has little to do about money,its about accountability.

  • Jamie McNiel

    Ive really been trying not to comment here… but I have always been under the impression, if the police tell you that you are under arrest, they DO have to, by law, tell you WHY…. which they did NOT do… at “20 seconds” they are telling his daughter to step back, not him, that makes it sound like he was approaching the officer, which he was not… His daughter was in fact NOT yelling profanities at the officers UNTIL they tased her father… up until that point it was SHE that was trying to deescalate the situation! There was really no good reason nor any legal reason to arrest this man… or any of his crew! Seems to me, he had every legal reason to be there, considering his entire crew had been arrested and his equipment had been damaged!! I can’t imagine how I would have responded, after being called by my son and told my truck had been rammed, called OPP MYSELF and asked them to go there…. then arrive and immediately be told I AM UNDER ARREST for nothing more then being exactly where I am supposed to be!!! Yes all of this sounds just and legal, think about it!

  • JEN

    Well said Boater!

  • boater69871

    -By your own words Dan, in no way should one ever open a OPP door with a loved one in hand cuffs in back of cruiser and not expect a bad outcome!
    -Be nice to see video of what went down before video started to roll to make officers arrest you and pull out his weapon.
    -I am sure your family is very nice.
    -if wasn’t about money, there wouldn’t be a 2million price tag

  • Fred Wilmar

    This story makes and sick and sad at the same time. How does a situation like this escalate to violence? If you “lay” down and obey, you get charged and then the onus is on the citizen to figh the charges. If you disobey, you get tazed and get charged anyways. It is a lose/lose proposition for the private citizen.

  • Jane Stiller

    Lets analyze the video..
    1.) In order for a police officer to draw a taser or gun, is only when they feel threatened or at a threat.Dan Knox didn’t comply before or at any time, basically intimidating the police. If this was in the US, he and his daughter would of been shot without question.

    2.) He also went to let his son out of the cruiser…ummm in my books, that is grounds for a taser.

    3.) The employees and Harrison Knox were driving eradicatlly causing people’s lives at risk. They also were the ones to create there own damage on the truck stating that it was the other individuals. They also were the ones to box in the others and getting out to fight the other parties.

    3.) Dan Knox also put his hand and then hands in his pockets, in the US that would of been grounds for the police to draw there guns and shoot him..our officers didn’t even state to get his hands out. What if he had a weapon and would of shot any officer?

    4.) His daughter was interfering with justice and once again would of been tackled to the ground from most US police forces while she was shooting her mouth off.

    5.) In the video when Mr. Knox went to his vehicle with his back turned? He raises his hand in a fist to strike the officer..again grounds to be shit or tackled to the ground.

    6.) All in all he was resisting arrest, did not comply ..For his charges to be dropped from our court system just goes to show you how it truly works for any criminals. This business they have is not a reputable business, ask around town and you will hear how angry and violent this family is. The editor that wrote the article is on there friends list from years ago…this story is mostly fabricated.

    Now, these people are going to waste tax payers money for a case that is not even going to get them anywhere or anything. …Agree

  • Jane Stiller

    Just because there is a backlash against police on the media, don’t be quick to jump on the band wagon and point the finger when you only see a one sided story or video..get the facts..the officer that tasered dan Knox is well known in the city and has won several awards for officer of the year. Also, that officer would do anything for anyone,has a heart of gold…to have him draw his taser out meant that you really had to get him angry….most of the people who are writing comments against the police are either criminals, or are friends of the family…don’t be quick to judge others…remember that’s God’s job!!!

  • Jamie McNiel

    Umm, pretty sure only ONE person could be driving the “offensive” vehicle.. and it was not the crew that blocked anyone in, it was the other way around?? What article did you read?

  • Jane Stiller

    Exactly. .the article is completely fabricated. .I read the article…but heard what exactly happened from the law abiding citizens what happened. .the employee’s escalated the incident. .the real question is how much money is everyone getting to lie and backlash the situation. .including Steffanie Petroni??

  • Jane Stiller

    You have to wonder how much money Steffanie Petroni is getting if they win??

  • Northern Resident

    Steffanie this article is terribly written and very one sided. I thought journalists were supposed to report the facts, not persuade people to one side of the argument. Adding family pictures is nice and all but at the end of the day he was disobeying police. I understand he thought the arrest was wrong but there is a time and place to argue. The OPP are doing a job and they have the right to defend themselves. I would taser any 250lb man who tried to intimidate me. Can everyone please remember that our OPP officers are there to help you in a second if anything goes wrong and they always put their lives on the line. If there is an accident on the highway in a snowstorm they are there! If someone is involved in a domestic they are there! They never refuse a call, never question who, they just go and help. Seriously people, if you think you can do better, sign up. But remember the job requires you to be brave and put your life on the line. Have respect for those who protect us.

  • Maryte Rutkauskas-Running

    I don’t understand why the businessman didn’t comply with the OPP?

    It seems the police were just trying to sort things out and he was having none of it.

    What the people did in blocking the vehicle in, in hindsight was wrong, but, TWO separate drivers felt the driver was incapacitated and felt a need to stop and hold him until the police got there…….

    I just think if Mr Knox had stayed out of the incident and complied with what the OPP asked him…..this would never have ended this way. Saying his son was sitting in an “oven” does not make sense. These police officers live in these vehicles for 12 hour shifts.

    It does not seem right that someone creates an incident and then gets to profit from it.

    The multiple friendly family pics should not have been put into this article…..
    It seems very unprofessional and asks the question what was the author trying to do. I don’t see any friendly family pics of the other parties involved.

    We need to support our police not draw them into conflict and then sue them.

  • Dan Knox

    As to how much money are the police getting to lie about everything,posteraro was getting over 125,000.00 and Nicolle was over 135,000.00 a year in 2014.

  • JEN

    Interesting point about the “oven”, it was so hot out he was wearing a denim coat?

  • Jamie McNiel

    So are you actually trying to say… that you were told by the people that were there that these treemen guys blocked THEM in, rather then the other way around?

  • Jane Stiller

    That is correct..the employee’s wanted to fight the victims. .they are the ones that caused there own damage to the truck making it look like the victims did it..

  • Jane Stiller

    Dan read my comments I think you missed them…and if your jealous about their salary you should of considered a career as a police officer.

  • Jane Stiller

    The article shows pictures of the family and how they look all innocent, thus article is one sided making people feel sorry..I think I’ll create my own site and interview all parties (the victims ) and get the real truth!! The opportunity were keeping us safe from this man. The article doesn’t state that Dan made threats to the officers and there families when he saw them out in public after the fact now does it? How is that a respectable businessman? ?

  • Jamie McNiel

    You are hilarious!! I “wonder” which one this is??? You are hiding behind a fake name… and saying you would like to interview the victims… then say the OPP were keeping “us” safe from this man…. sooo keeping who safe exactly??? Are you a “victim”???

  • Jane Stiller

    Jamie! I just state the truth..I don’t like liars. Also when people try and get away with lieing. You must be a criminal with a hatred on police. I’m a law abiding citizen. .my account has nothing to do with it. In the end, after all said and done in my opinion the police will win!!!

  • Dan Knox

    This is not about money,I tried to talk with the opp commander March 20 of last year,he said they did everything they were supposed to do ,I put in a complaint with the oiprd,on, independent police review,the opp investigated themselves and found the 20 or more laws they broke that day to be a ok with the opp, after getting nowhere with these people.i launched a suit

  • Jane Stiller

    Call me stupid but the headline reads…businessman sues for 2 million dollars?? Obviously if it has been investigatedoing and nothing done about it means you were in the wrong. ..so next time obey the law and get down and do as your told along with your respectable family as you say..as for your respectable daughter..she needs to be taught some manners and how to speak to authority figures, respect, and also attend some anger and voilence management classes…

  • From what i seen and read here , having never heard of this incident .
    I believe that the tree men , and Mr. Dan Knox , were victims of over exited police .
    Even if laws were broken they weren’t in need of violence at any point in what i saw .
    Get on the Ground ? What kind of request is that to order any non violent citizen ?
    You want a man to bend over and sit on the ground just because you have more weapons ?
    These police officers are to pumped up and forget that they’re dealing with humans not a helpless animal .
    Being tasered from behind is not a joke and really not necessary if they would have just used a more diplomatic approach .
    I fleetingly knew Mr. Knox during his younger days and he was a person that was not easily ordered around , but he was civil , and was pushed into most of his youthful problems .
    But in those days the police were part of the community and didn’t act like this .

  • Dan Knox

    Vanderloo told the police he got out of. His truck and went after Harrison,when this thug tried to put Harrison in a head lock Harrison pinched him under his arms,the bully then retreated to his truck and rammed the truck with 4 employee in it on their way to work..posteraro then told Harrison that he was having a bad day and he was under arrest,posteraro then cuffed Harrison,criminally too tight,crunching bone and nerves,he then placed Harrison in the back of his cruiser ,turned the air off rolled up all windows ,and started cooking Harrison,for pinching vanderloo

  • Dan Knox

    Thes opp that day were neither brave or honourable or were they protecting themselves,just because they had guns was no reason to bully assault and torture my family