Justice was Denied; again

By: Doug Whitlow, BA

On Wednesday, June, 27, 2018; a Jury of his Peers found Peter Khill Not Guilty of 2nd Degree Murder in the death of Jonny Styres of the Six Nations Indian Reserve in the Mohawk Territory of Southern, Ontario, Canada. Although the people of the Six Nations Reserve were hoping Khill would be convicted; many people including the author of this essay were not surprised by the Not Guilty verdict as the Six Nations people have never been treated equally by the Canadian Legal System. The few stories being written of in this essay along with that of Jon Styres very clearly indicate that Indigenous people are; in most cases treated more with contempt; than compassion by the Law Courts in Canada. This legal contempt for Natives is being proclaimed Loud and Clear in the Jon Styres story as the Defendant Peter Khill openly admitted shooting Styres after ordering Styres to “put up your hands”; an order to which Styres complied to and was then shot twice for doing as he was ordered to do. Mr. Khill was a soldier in the Canadian Armed Forces. The Canadian Armed Forces show just as much contempt and ill-will toward Indigenous people as the “Forces” do for the Taliban and other enemies of this country.

The Fred Quilt Case;

This story involves four Chilcotin Indians; Fred Quilt, Christine Quilt; Quilt’s Adopted son Robin and Agnes Quilt, Fred’s sister-in-law. Fred Quilt was severely injured while unconscious and later died from his injuries suffered during an altercation with two Mounties on the BC Highway # 20 near Alexis Creek. Much of the material in this article comes from the Public Inquiry into the death of Fred Quilt. Famed BC Trial Lawyer, the late Harry Rankin was the Quilt family lawyer at the Inquest

On November, 21, 1970, Chilcotin Indians, Fred Quilt and his wife Christine left their home on the Stone Indian Reserve in British Columbia and travelled in their pickup truck to attend a funeral at the Anahim Reserve. After the funeral, the Quilt family left the Anahim Reserve along with their adopted son Robin and Fred’s sister-in-law, Agnes Quilt; all four people were drinking Vanilla Extract and Fred got lost on the way back home. A short time later a Public Health nurse called the RCMP at Alexis Creek to report a stalled truck blocking the highway. When the two Mounties arrived on the scene they found Fred Quilt asleep at the wheel and everyone else asleep as well. The Senior Constable at the scene stated later on that he had attempted to awaken Fred Quilt, but was unable to do so. The officer also stated that there was a strong odor of vanilla coming from the truck and the driver (Fred Quilt) appeared to be intoxicated. The Officer also stated that he attempted to drag Quilt from the truck and Quilt fell on the ground.

Christine Quilt said that she awakened to see two men outside their truck attempting to wake her Fred up as Fred lay on the ground. Christine Quilt said one man was a Mountie in uniform and the second man was in civilian clothes wearing a Yellow Jacket and high Cowboy Boots. Christine said that upon awakening she heard the man in yellow shouting at her husband to; “get up you son of a bitch” and then she saw the man wearing the Cowboy Boots jump up and down on Fred Quilt’s chest several times. The Constable told the Inques that he and his partner finally managed to get all four of the Indians in their patrol car and drove them all to the Anahim Reserve. The two Mounties then drove back to the truck and pushed it off the road and set out some flares so no one would hit the truck. Christine Quilt said that as soon as she got to Anahim, she immediately got a ride back to the truck but is was on fire when she and her companions arrived. The Mounties denied setting the truck on fire. Once again, just like in other similar incidents involving police and Indigenous people, an Inquest found no wrong doing on the part of the RCMP in spite of the many obvious outright lies told by professional experts during the Inquest.

In making his closing statement at the conclusion to the Inquest into Fred Quilt’s death; Harry Rankin discussed some of the many racist and discriminatory practices of the RCMP and other Police Services by quoting from a former RCMP Corporal, named Jack Ramsay who had gave an interview to Mclean’s Magazine about why police lie; despite a warning from his superiors against the interview. In the interview, Corporal Ramsay said “during my last seven years on the force, I watched fellow members lying, falsifying records and ignoring suspect’s rights until I came to dislike putting on the famous scarlet tunic, because it made me feel like a hypocrite”. “Any member with ten years’ service has learned to lie skilfully”. A member must place the force ahead of truth; justice; and service to the people of Canada”. You lie, first to survive; then, as fear and guilt blunt conscience, to get ahead”.

The third part of this essay involves a quick glimpse into the Gustafson Lake Incident of 1995 in the same geographic part of British Columbia where Fred Quilt had lived and died after or during an altercation with the RCMP. The Gustafson Lake Incident was instigated and carried out by “E” Division of the RCMP and supported by the Canadian Armed Forces and the FBI from the United States. The Gustafson Lake Incident was a completely False and Irresponsible Act carried out by the RCMP and Canadian Forces who used “Indians” for target practice.

The Gustafson Lake Standoff occurred in the summer of 1995 after the RCMP had wrongfully informed the people of BC that the Mounties had uncovered a “domestic terrorist camp” in the South Central Highlands of British Columbia. According to RCMP Media Spokesperson, Sergeant Peter Montague, the Mounties were attempting to talk the “home grown terrorists” into giving up and surrendering in an attempt to avoid any bloodshed. In the event that they refused to surrender unconditionally; the Mounties had seconded (FBI Agent Michael W)., an expert in Domestic Terrorism from Quantico, Virginia and had sent the Agent to “the lake” to command the RCMP and Canadian Forces working on the ground and in the bush around Gustafson Lake. In the trial of the Gustafson Lake Defendants in 1996-97, those in attendance learned that Mike W. had a plan to build an army of 2100 hundred Canadian Soldiers and Police to assault the camp and (kill if necessary) any or all of the group of 21 poorly equipped old Indigenous men, women and children. After being harassed by the RCMP and Canadian Army all through the summer and fall of 1995, the “Indian Terrorists” surrendered and were later Tried in a Court of Law. The trial of the Gustafson Lake Incident, defendants carried on for almost a year and each and every one of the Native and Non-Native defendants were found Guilty of their crimes against the State by a Jury of their Peers and all of the defendants (except Shelagh Franklin, a white woman who had a new born baby) went to jail.

The Gustafson Lake Incident and the Jon Styres incident have several things in common. Both trials involved the Canadian Armed Forces and Canadian Native people. At Gustafson Lake the Canadian Forces were supporting and training Canadian police officers in the use of Automatic Rifles and how to utilize Armoured Personnel Carriers (APC’s) in battle against Indigenous people. In the Jon Styres Incident, the Canadian Armed Forces had trained Peter Khill to kill enemies of the State. In both instances, the aggressors had openly admitted shooting at Indigenous people with the intent to kill and were found innocent of their crimes by a jury of their peers. In both incidents, the Jury was almost all white with one person of colour in attendance. In the Gustafson Lake Trial, the Jury Foreman was a BC Native and in the Styres Trial the jury was all most all white as well.


Men and women in uniform are supposed uphold the Laws of the land in the Canadian Legal System. Abraham Lincoln said that God created all men equal; the Canadian Legal System treats most Indigenous lawbreakers unlawfully; usually unjustly and in most cases unequally, especially in the Law Courts of the land.

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