“Outraged.” That’s how the Ontario Provincial Police Commissioner felt when learning that Randall McKenzie, the man charged with first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of Constable Grzegorz Pierzchala, was out on bail and had a lifetime ban from owning a firearm.
Constable Pierzchala was responding to a report of a vehicle stuck in a ditch when he encountered McKenzie. He was wanted by police for missing an August court date while out on bail for charges including assaulting a police officer and illegally possessing a handgun.
This story and several other recent incidents point to a troubling reality: Canada’s broken bail system is failing to keep Canadians safe. The Liberals, supported by the NDP, passed easy bail legislation and removed mandatory jail time for serious violent crimes. Worse yet, many of these criminals are now permitted to serve time under house arrest in the same communities as their victims.
The soft-on-crime policies embraced by the Liberal government are taking their toll. Violent crime has gone up 32% in the past year, and gang related killings have gone up by 92% since Justin Trudeau became Prime Minister.
More and more voices are calling for bail reform, including police associations and the provincial and territorial premiers.
Our families deserve safe streets and communities. Our bail system must be reformed to ensure individuals charged with violent offences do not have the opportunity to harm innocent Canadians. No more catch-and-release.
The time to act is now. Conservative members of the Justice Committee are calling for an immediate investigation into our bail system and we hope the other parties will work with us to address this problem and once again make our communities safe.