A year after Chantel Moore was shot and killed by a New Brunswick police officer, her mother is still waiting for answers and accountability.
Martha Martin said she still doesn't know how her daughter ended up getting shot at least five times by an Edmundston Police Force officer at her apartment building on June 4, 2020, during what was supposed to be a wellness check.
And she's heard no word on whether that police officer will face charges, nor whether the Edmundston police and other forces across New Brunswick and Canada have changed how they conduct wellness checks in the wake of Moore's death.
"A year after… and I feel like 'How does somebody end up losing their life and being fatally taken the way she was?'" said Martin, speaking to Radio-Canada on the eve of the anniversary of her daughter's death.
"She had three shots to the back, two in the chest. Her leg was completely broken at the bottom. What kind of wellness check is this?
"I think for transparency, what are we asking? Do we need to push harder for all our police to be wearing body cameras so they're accountable for their actions? I think that's the biggest part — how do we hold them accountable for their actions and what are they willing to do to be transparent so people will have trust in them again?"
Moore, 26, was fatally shot in the early morning of June 4 during a wellness check. Police say she left her apartment and came at an officer with a knife. The officer then shot her.
An investigation by Qubec's police watchdog agency, the bureau des enquêtes indépendantes, or BEI, was conducted at the request of the RCMP, and a report has been submitted to New Brunswick's public prosecution service to determine if charges are warranted against the officer.
The officer, who hasn't been named, was taken off duty for three weeks before being put back on the job in an administrative role.
Martin said she's disappointed there hasn't been a decision yet on whether to charge the officer, but added she's supposed to meet with officials from New Brunswick's public prosecution service on June 7 on the matter.
"And it's a little nerve-wracking to know what the response is going to be because this is something we've been waiting for," she said.
Martin said she also wants to see a public inquiry into systemic racism in policing in Canada.
Last year, despite pressure from Indigenous leaders, Premier Blaine Higgs refused to hold a public inquiry into systemic racism in New Brunswick's justice system. That followed the shooting death of another Indigenous person, Rodney Levi, at the hands of an RCMP officer.
"I just think it's easier for them to turn a blind eye and say that it [systemic racism in the justice system] is non-existent," Martin said.
Martin said she plans to mark the anniversary of her daughter's death with an event in Fredericton where yellow shirts and dresses will be handed out to attendees to honour Moore and other people who have been killed in interactions with police.
With files from Radio-Canada
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