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RCMP apologize for pepper spray incident

<p>RCMP issued a formal apology yesterday to Sechelt tribe members for an incident Monday in which several people, including women and children, were pepper-sprayed during a soccer celebration.</p>

Women, children affected by spray


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Courtesy of Shannon Phillips


Trevor Julius, 9, was among those treated for pepper-spray exposure Monday.





RCMP issued a formal apology yesterday to Sechelt tribe members for an incident Monday in which several people, including women and children, were pepper-sprayed during a soccer celebration.





The apology read in part, “the fact that some children were accidentally contaminated by the pepper-spray was extremely unfortunate and for that we formally apologize.”





Sechelt Chief Councillor Stan Dixon accepted the apology, saying mistakes were made.





Staff Sgt. Brad Zalys told Global TV yesterday that officers resorted to pepper spray to thwart aggressive adults who were interfering with the arrest of soccer coach Troy Mayer, 42.





“There was no intent to directly spray the children that were there,” said Zalys.





B.C. aboriginal leaders swiftly condemned the incident, saying RCMP actions were too extreme and unnecessary.





“We are absolutely outraged at the reckless, dangerous and highly irresponsible actions of the RCMP officers,” said Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, president of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs.





First Nations Summit co-chair Judith Sayers, a lawyer and mother of two, said: “Pepper-spraying young kids, babies and mothers is beyond anything we’ve ever seen and is inexcusable.”















Celebration thwarted



  • The incident occurred after RCMP officers attempted to stop a pickup truck with 10 youths in the rear box celebrating a soccer championship.



 
 
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