Sadly, this TRAGEDY occurred in New Brunswick in 2018. Brady, a youth of 22-years old died after having been hit by a car:
Bambi’s heart goes to Brady’s parents, extended family, and friends.
After a lengthy hit-and-run trial, Judge Denise Leblanc “has found Maurice Johnson not guilty in the death of Brady Francis that happened two years ago”.
“I am not convinced beyond a reasonable doubt that Johnson knowingly hit a person,” she said whilst taking over two hours to read her decision to the court.
The details are in this article: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/maurice-johnson-verdict-brady-francis-1.5547219
It is absolutely heart-breaking to read about the words Brady’s mom, saying she “felt let down by the Canadian justice system”… “I’m so angry, hurt, lost … let down,” to use her own words. “Why did I have faith in this[?]”.
In the same vein, the Elsipogtog First Nation Chief Aaron Sock said immediately after the verdict: “There’s no justice for First Nations people in Canada”.
Life is SO unfair… Sadly, there is nothing, not even a guilty verdict, that would have brought Brady back. It cannot also bring immediate closure and healing to all those hearts who have loved him.
This NB tragedy makes Bambi think of her family’s neighbours in Beirut. They lost their two sons in two different car tragedies. In both cases, the deceased boy was hanging out with the same friend. Of course, not his fault. It was just fate. The family moved on with their lives, despite the initial shock and anger.
In Brady’s hit-and-run death whilst waiting for a lift (perhaps from his parents?), there is no word that can be said or written to describe the cruelty of the sad story.
Mr. Johnson maintained his version of a deer, thinking he hit one. Forensic evidence was also missing to make the Judge convinced “beyond a reasonable doubt” that this man “knowingly hit a person”.
In this judgment, it is clear for Bambi that the ethno-linguistic background of the young victim was not related to the outcome of this trial. In other terms, the historic facts and reality of abuses and colonization toward our first nations are irrelevant here… despite the disappointment and anger of loved ones.
Justice should be served equally to all citizens, even when they happen to be from this or that vulnerable group in our society.
Bambi could have misunderstood the CBC article. However, it seems to her that the RCMP police worked hard to prove their guilt hypothesis.
Despite this, and despite a societal public opinion of sympathy toward first nations, Judge Leblanc seemed to have meticulously analyzed all the evidence at her hand. It takes much courage on behalf of a judge to come to a verdict based on evidence (or lack of?), and not on politics.
Of course, our legal system is far from being perfect, especially perhaps in NB, but it remains the best “impartial” process humans can have to obtain a resemblance of justice.
As a citizen self-representing, Bambi’ spouse experienced the imperfect NB legal system. His experience brought to his/our attention serious issues/gaps. However, despite this bad story, not a single minute passed by where him or Bambi thought that his saga with our town and, by extension with the NB or Canadian legal system, was due to his different heritage (culture, including language/religion, etc.).
To conclude this post, may Brady’s memory be eternal… May his mom and dad manage to find enough peace to be able to go to sleep tonight, despite their sadness and disappointment.