The Toronto police officer convicted of attempted murder in the 2013 shooting death of a troubled teen on an empty streetcar is expected to learn his fate today.
Constable James Forcillo was acquitted in January of second-degree murder in the death of 18-year-old Sammy Yatim, but found guilty of attempted murder for continuing to fire after the dying teen had fallen to the floor.
The offence carries a mandatory minimum sentence of four or five years, but the officer has filed a constitutional appeal.
Forcillo’s legal team has argued the mandatory minimum was never intended to apply to peace officers who legitimately carry a gun at the behest of the state in order to protect society.
They have asked for a sentence of house arrest, while the Crown is asking for the officer to spend eight to 10 years behind bars.
In July 2013, Forcillo fired two sets of bullets at Yatim, who had consumed ecstasy and was holding a small knife on an empty street car, causing him to die.
The incident was captured on a cellphone video that went viral and caused public outrage, prompting Toronto police to launch a review of officers’ use of force and their response to emotionally disturbed people.