"The justice system failed us": Mayor Patrick Brown angrily responds after Brampton shooting leaves woman dead

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Following a recent fatal shooting in Brampton, Mayor Patrick Brown sent a letter to federal and provincial justice ministries indicating his anger at what he says was a preventable incident.

The shooting in question happened on Tuesday, July 28, when police were notified of shots fired at a residence in the area of Fairglen Avenue and Deerpark Crescent.

Officers arrived on the scene, where they located a 27 year old Brampton man and a 25 year old Halton Hills woman suffering from gunshot wounds.

The female was pronounced deceased at the scene and the male was transported to a trauma centre where he remains in critical condition, police say.

According to police, the male has been identified as Darnell Reid and the female has been identified as Darian Hailey Henderson-Bellman.

The victim and the accused had been in a relationship for approximately three years, police say.

Reid was charged with second-degree murder, possession of a loaded firearm, and two counts of failure to comply with release order.

Police say in May 2020, the accused was arrested for possession of an illegal firearm for an unrelated matter.

After six days in custody, the accused — who allegedly regularly ignored his conditions of release and continued to offend by possessing illegal firearms — was released back into the community with a GPS monitoring device.

This is a perfect example of the real and heart-breaking consequences of our revolving door justice system,” Brown said in a letter to Canada’s Minister of Public Safety Bill Blair, Canada’s Minister of Justice David Lametti, Ontario’s Solicitor General Sylvia Jones, and Ontario’s Attorney General Doug Downey.

This was preventable. Enough is enough. This is infuriating,” Brown continued. “The police did their job. The justice system failed us.”

The mayor echoed the sentiments of Peel Police Chief Nishan Duraiappah, who said the incident was “a tragic outcome for a young person who carried a bright future” and who also expressed his frustration with the justice system being unable to protect her.

"At the time of this incident, the accused was the subject of an interim judicial release stemming from a previous domestic violence incident between the accused and the victim,” said Duraiappah.

Since that charge, he had been arrested on four separate occasions for breaching terms of his release by being in contact with her. The family and police struggled to keep her safe."

In his letter, Brown notes that 13 of the 31 homicides in Peel Region last year were domestic fatalities, reportedly the highest number to date.

There was a total of 18,377 reports, including 10,818 intimate partner calls where 3,107 charges were laid, and of the 7,519 family violence calls, 963 charges were laid, according to Brown.

We must do better at protecting victims of domestic abuse. There needs to be a better balance between the rights of the accused and the rights of the victims. Our justice system has failed victims of crimes far too often,” the mayor said.

When are the laws going to change?”

The full letter can be read here.

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