February 1991, Vol. 2, Iss. 1
More goods on Gord
The "Gord Junger Story" gets longer and longer and more complicated all the time.
First, the Ontario Attorney General investigated the cop who resigned, rather than being fired, last March after the Internal Affairs department learned that he was running an escort agency with his former girlfriend. The A-G (under the old Liberal government) decided that there was "no basis for criminal charges" and wouldn't say anything more about the case officially because an investigations by the Ontario Police Commission (OPC) was set up last June. Of course the resignation agreement the cops made with Junger stipulated that there would be no criminal charges laid.
Then, the OPC began hearings in late October which continued for a couple of days in mid-December, and for half a day in early January, when it was adjourned until the end of February. The inquiry is being conducted by a panel consisting of Julio Mendez, Jean Beauprie, and Chairman Frank D'Andrea, and is to examine the operation of Internal Affairs in general, not just the Junger case.
Internal Affairs, as that part of the police force which is supposed to investigate police misconduct, has been in for a lot of flack lately, as you can imagine.
When the inquiry began in October, its first order of business was to decide who got "standing" at the hearings that is, who got to have their lawyers represent them to intervene on their behalf. The OPC granted standing to Metro Police Chief William McCormack, the Internal Affairs department, the Metro Police Commission, the police's Public Complaints Commission, Gord Junger, and the escort who used to be his girlfriend.
One of the lawyers, Daniel Brodsky, argued not only that she ought to have standing at the inquiry but also that she should not have to pay her own legal costs. She was ordered to appear before the inquiry but she is no longer working as a call girl and couldn't afford the costs.
The Solicitor General decided to pay her costs, but only on a legal aid scale, and the government will only cover the costs of one of her two lawyers, so Brodsky and fellow lawyer Marlys Edwardh will take turns representing her.
The December and January hearings consisted of other police Internal Affairs departments presenting unsworn evidence about their own procedures. This will continue from February 25 to March 1, at which date a block of time is to be set aside to carry the hearing through to their conclusion. At that time, the details of the Junger case will be examined, as will presentations from the public and concerned groups.
Meanwhile, the reason Junger's former girlfriend went to the press in the first place was because Internal affairs had refused to return tapes of incriminating conversation between her and Junger that she needed to pursue a paternity suit against the cop. The tapes have since been returned, and the woman has given birth to a baby boy.
Finally, reporter Alan Story, who broke the Junger story in The Toronto Star, was fired by The Star because he agreed to appear before the OPC inquiry. The Star's reasoning was that they owned his research on the case, since he did the work while in their employ. Presumably they don't want to jeopardize relations with the cops, who are, after all, their primary "news source."
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