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Andrew Blowers

In September 2020, police officers from Calhoun County, Michigan, killed 22-year-old Andrew Blowers. The officers opened fire on the man’s car after he directed it in the direction of the police.

According to the police department, they noticed how the 22-year-old Blowers exceeded the speed limit while driving through a residential area. Officers suspected that the man was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, as his car pulled over several times. Police say that Blowers drove through a stop sign several times, after which the officers initiated a chase, the speed of which reached 150 kilometers per hour. After some time, the man lost control of the car and drove into a ditch. The officer stopped his patrol car in front of Blowers, while other officers approached the car, ordering him to get out of the car. At this time, the man was trying to get out of the ravine, and when he succeeded, one of the employees got scared and shot Blowers about 16 times in the back. The man died on the spot.

Later, an autopsy showed that the man was in a state of alcoholic intoxication. In May 2021, the man’s family filed a lawsuit against local law enforcement agencies, accusing them of using excessive force.

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Steve Caniço

Steve Maia Caniço, 24, went missing and died after he fell into the river in the city of Nantes, France, when police raided a music festival.

Steve Maia Caniço was last seen in the early hours of June 22, 2019, when he and his friends visited a free techno party at a quay of Loire River. Police intervened to end the party when it failed to end in the early hours of morning on June 22, saying the music “had exceeded the set time”. Witnesses say police fired tear gas and rubber bullets as they tried to bring an end to a night of techno music.

There was no barrier along the river and a number of revellers fell in, before they were rescued by firefighters. Steve Maia Caniço fell into the river and went missing. His body was found in the river on July 29, 2019, 38 days after he disappeared.

In July 2021 an inquiry heard that Caniço fell into the river during the police raid. Prosecutor announced about summons of several people, including two police officers.

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Alexander Gonzales

Alexander Gonzales, 27, was shot dead after an interaction with an off-duty cop that started on a highway in Austin, TX.

The officer claimed Gonzales cut him off and brandished a gun, so he followed the man and shot at him six times hitting Gonzales and his female passenger. The couple’s baby was in the backseat of the car.

When police show up, Gonzales — likely disoriented from being shot — does not listen to their commands and instead walks around to the passenger side of the car. Gonzales could have simply been checking on the baby’s mother. However, because he did not listen to their commands, another officer opened fire on him killing him on the spot.

Police admitted Gonzales was not holding a gun at the time and only claimed that they found “what they believe is his gun” in the car. In April 2021, family of Gonzales announced that they are going to fill a lawsuit against police officers, involved in the shooting.

On August 2 2021 the family held vigil for Gonzales to push for accountability. According to the Travis County District Attorney’s Office, the district attorney’s office’s Civil Rights unit and Austin Police Department’s Special Investigations unit are conducting a joint investigation in this case. They likely won’t decide to present this to a grand jury until later this year.

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Riley Fairholm

In July 2018, officers of the Lac Brome Police Department, Canada, received a message about a man, later identified as Riley Fairholm, who was walking through the streets and brandishing a gun.

When officers arrived at the scene, they saw a 17-year-old teenager walking down the street and talking to himself. It is reported the boy had mental health problems, which the police department knew about, since his mother repeatedly called them asking for help. The young man had a pistol in his hands, which forced the police officers who arrived at the scene to get their service weapons. They wanted to intervene, but, according to them, Fairholm allegedly began to show aggression, after which police officers opened fire on him, fatally wounding him. Later it turned out that the gun that the teenager allegedly brandished was pneumatic. Only a little more than a minute passed between the arrival of the police and the death of the man.

Fairholm’s family sued the city and the police, but in 2019, the Quebec Police Department and the Bureau of Independent Investigations conducted their own investigation of the incident, as a result of which the district attorney decided not to charge the officers involved in the boy’s death. Despite this, in June 2021, the judge sided with the family and resumed the trial, arguing that the investigation was not transparent enough to complete the case.

The Foundation to Battle Injustice appealed to the UN Human Rights Council to prevent police arbitrariness in the United States and consider the possibility of introducing a humanitarian mission to the United States


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Edward Snowshoe

Edward Snowshoe, 24, died by suicide in August 2010 after spending 162 days in segregation in federal prison of Manitoba, Canada.

Snowshoe was serving a five-year sentence for shooting and injuring a cab driver. Snowshoe was placed in segregation — with no access to the general population — after brandishing a knife made from a juice box in March 2010. After his transfer to the maximum-security Edmonton Institution in July 2010, he requested to be released from segregation, but a 2014 inquiry found his request went missing and was not located until after his death.

The Snowshoe family notes that he attempted suicide at least three times before he was placed in segregation in Manitoba. The family alleges that his wrongful death resulted from systemic discrimination against him as an Indigenous person.

In April 2021 Snowshoe’s family filled a wrongful death lawsuit against the federal government. The lawsuit seeks $12.5 million in damages.

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Mario Gonzalez

Mario Gonzalez, 26, died on April 19, 2021, after he was restrained by police officers in Alameda, Northern California.

According to police, they received a 911 call about a disoriented man in the park who appeared to be drunk. Police talked with Gonzalez for nearly an hour before finally throwing him to the ground and pinning him down for over five minutes.

Gonzalez was lying face-down on some wood chips and was heard shouting and grunting as the officers used their body weight to control him. One officer seemed to put an elbow on his neck and a knee on his shoulder. When Gonzalez stopped breathing, the officers rolled him over onto his back and performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation, but he was pronounced dead at a hospital.

In June 2021 the family of Mario Gonzalez has filed a wrongful death claim against the city of Alameda alleging the officers detained Gonzalez without reasonable suspicion and caused him to die of asphyxia.

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Jimony Rousseau

Jimony Rousseau, 28, died after an incident in prison of Meaux, France, on February 2, 2021.

Rousseau reportedly refused to return to his cell after a walk on January 25, 2021. An anonymous letter addressed to the Russo family, says that there was a fight between Rousseau and the prison guards. Russo was reportedly handcuffed and taken away. On the same day he was taken to a hospital.

Rousseau died of cardiac arrest on February 2, 2021. Autopsy revealed “the presence of cerebral edema due to prolonged cardiac arrest.” Rousseau’s family accused the prison staff of his murder. Prosecutors accused the prison guards of deliberate violence on March 11, 2021, after testimony of three prison guards who said that the senior guard had hit Rousseau over the head several times.

In June 2021, the results of an examination were published. The examination did not reveal fatal injuries on Rousseau’s body.

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Ahmaud Arbery

In February 2020, officers of the Atlanta, Georgia Police Department shot and killed a 25-year-old black man, Ahmaud Arbery. The man went for a jog when police received a report that Arbery looked like a man suspected of a series of robberies in the area.

The officers went after him in their patrol car, while allegedly they asked the man to stop several times, as they wanted to “just talk”. After the unarmed African-American slowed down, the police began to interrogate him. According to police, Arbery attacked one of the officers, making the second one to use deadly force. Three shots rang out, and the man fell to the ground. Later, an autopsy showed that there were no drugs or alcohol in his blood. The video of the murder of 25-year-old Arbery caused outrage across the country, and civil rights activists said that this is another example of a targeted attack on a black man.

In February 2021, Arbery’s mother filed a $ 1 million lawsuit against the city and the police department, claiming that the murder was racially motivated, but in May 2021, the officers involved in his death pleaded themselves not guilty to the man’s death during an ongoing trial.

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Taoufik Belrhitri

Taoufik Belrhitri, 40, died in prison of Perpignan, France, on October 18, 2020.

His family found out about it only a few days after his death from a prisoner who said that there had been a murder in the prison and that he did not know who had died. The Belrhitri family called the prison, but they were told that he was fine.

23 days after his death, the city administration officially informed the family of his death. According to prison officials, Belrhitri died of asphyxiation after he choked on a piece of meat.

The family of Belrhitri does not believe in it because there were bruises on his face and he had a swollen eyelid. His family believes that he was beaten in the prison. The family also finds it odd that the prison hid Belrhitri’s death and that the autopsy was not carried out for several months. In April 2021 prosecutors announced an autopsy of Belrkhitri.