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Windsor Police Officer Killed

Recce41

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After 125 yrs of being one of the only cities that had not had a peaceofficer killed. A dark day in my home town. It shocks me about the age of the lil basT@#$s.

RIP.
 

Blackhorse7

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:cdn: :salute: :cdn:

It went out over our in car terminals yesterday afternoon.  For those of you who are Police Officers that post on this site, make sure your wearing that armour.  I caught myself complaining yesterday about how hot it was, and then this happens.  Zip, my condolences.  Myself and several others will be putting our mourning ribbons on our vests today.
 

JBP

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I cannot say words that will make any of you in the police feel better, but just know we feel your pain at least in a very small part and wish you all luck in continuing on to protect good Canadians throughout Canada and making people's lives safe and happy.

This is why every time I see any emergency service (fire, police or ambulance) rushing by, I wish them luck and pray that they won't be running to thier fate's...

RIP and I wish you farewell John
:salute:
 

zipperhead_cop

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Again I thank you for your kind words. 
If anyone has anything they could share with the family, please access the attached link.  With the wealth of education and experience here, I would imagine that you collectively have some words that can take the edge off of the pain of loosing a loved one in the line of service.


Johns Obituary


The Windsor Police Family appreciates your support.  :cdn:
 

Fishbone Jones

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To all members:

The following has been sent on behalf of the Site, Owner, Staff and Membership:

"On behalf of the Staff and Membership, of www.army.ca, I would like to offer our deepest sympathies and heartfelt condolences. Have comfort in the fact that the world is a better place because of John. He will not have died in vain."

Feel free to send personal condolences to:

http://www.legacy.com/can-windsor/Guestbook.asp?Page=GuestBook&PersonID=17646498

Be advised, there is a very large lag time ( almost 24 hours) from post to publish, while they vette the messages for content.
 

big bad john

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Rest in Peace.

http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20060511/atkinson_funeral_060511/20060511?hub=TopStories

Thousands honour fallen Windsor police officer
CTV.ca News Staff

Thousands of police officers from across North America gathered on Thursday to honour the life and legacy of slain Const. John Atkinson at his funeral in the southwestern Ontario city of Windsor.

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty described Atkinson as a hero who died doing his duty.

"Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends," said McGuinty, quoting from the Gospel of John. "Sr. Const. John Atkinson was a hero. Not only because he made the ultimate sacrifice, but because he did it out of love; love for his friends, love for his community, love for his fellow man."

The funeral service was held at a University of Windsor recreation centre -- one of the few venues in the city large enough to hold the thousands of people who came to pay their respects.

Chief Glen Stannard of the Windsor police described Atkinson as a dedicated worker who could always be relied upon.

"John was a hero in life before this tragedy," Stannard said. "He was already a hero and best friend to Shelley, superman and daddy to Mitchell and Nicole, a hero to his family, his church, his community and the Windsor Police Service."

"He was full of life and he loved life."

The crowd included a large contingent of uniformed officers from across Canada and the U.S., creating a virtual sea of uniforms in the audience. Between 7,000 and 10,000 people were expected to attend the ceremony.

Police officers from London, Ont. took over duties in Windsor to allow local officers to attend the funeral of their slain comrade.

Atkinson's casket, draped in a Canadian flag, was escorted by a Windsor police honour guard, wearing black arm bands showing the badge number of the fallen officer.

Atkinson's wife and seven-year-old daughter and nine-year-old son arrived shortly after, where his widow, Shelley, was embraced by Windsor Mayor Eddie Francis.

"Your father was a hero, always remember that," Mayor Francis said, addressing Atkinson's children during his speech. "Shelly, your husband made a difference. He made our city a better place and that's the greatest accomplishment I can think of. Thank you for sharing him with us."

Thousands have already attended a memorial and the visitation this week for Atkinson, the only officer killed in the Windsor force's history.

"I have always felt that a police officer is almost like a public possession," Mike Sale, a historian with the Toronto police, told CTV Newsnet.

"A police officer, when called to that service, serves everyone in the community and society and so when a police officer is lost -- while the loss is tragic and devastating for the immediate family -- there is this reverberating effect throughout the professional community," said Sale, a former inspector with the Toronto police service.

Atkinson, a 14-year veteran with the force, was gunned down in the line of duty last Friday afternoon when he approached two men believed to be in the middle of a drug deal at a local convenience store parking lot.

The 37-year-old leaves behind a wife, nine-year-old son and a daughter who turned seven one day after he was shot.

Nikkolas Robert Brennan and Cody Clifford Defausses, both 18, have been charged with first-degree murder. They are also charged with drug trafficking and Brennan faces a weapons charge.

A group of hotels in Windsor is donating 10 per cent of revenues from every room booked by those attending Atkinson's funeral.

The Westmont hotel group, which runs the Hilton, Radisson and Comfort Inn, says the money will go into a trust fund for Atkinson's children.

Westmont director of sales Shelly Sechopoulos told The Canadian Press that they've already been able to raise thousands of dollars.

Meanwhile, blue ribbons are popping up all around Windsor in memory of the slain officer.

The campaign has spread so quickly that it's now hard to find such ribbons for sale in the city.

Danielle Smith, whose husband is a provincial police officer and her brother a Windsor cop, initiated the idea on Saturday, one day after Atkinson was gunned down.

Smith says she's been overwhelmed by the response.

"I thought it would be a few neighbours around my neighbourhood," Smith said.

With files from The Canadian Press
 

big bad john

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http://www.police.windsor.on.ca/

ATKINSON CHILDREN TRUST FUND

A trust fund has been established at the Toronto Dominion Bank and the Toronto Dominion Trust for John's children, Mitchell 9 years, and Nicolle 7 years.  In the 'pay to' line print:  Windsor Police Association "In Trust" .  In the memo line print: Atkinson children account #3880-5218729  .  Donations can be made at any TD Bank or Trust branch in Canada.  Donations can also be forwarded to the Windsor Police Association at 2510 Ouellette Ave. Windsor, ON  N8X 1L4  .

Please let us all be very mindful of the sacrifice made here and let us be generous for our brother, comrade and protector.  He who in life took care of us, let us take care of his in death.
 

zipperhead_cop

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Thanks for posting that link BBJ.  The outpouring of help to Shellie Atkinson and her children has been fantastic. 
Well, a brutal week for me winds down now.  Saying goodbye to John has been very hard, and the anger at the senselessness has not diminished.  When I am able to speak of the details of the shooting you will realize how hard John fought.  He literally fought past the end of his life. 
The funeral was like nothing we had ever seen in Windsor.  There was an unprecedented level of cooperation from scores of Police Services, and help was simply a matter of asking.  If anyone ever doubted that all Police on both sides of the border are one family, then this was their heads up.  We had officers from other agencies, many from London PS, come into our city and take our calls so the maximum number members could attend the funeral. 
Shellie was so unbelievably strong, she put us to shame.  She would actually come to the members and ask them how they were doing.  She is a courageous woman, and will need all of her strength to get through all this now that the hoopla has died down. 
I received a poem that was written for John by OPP Constable Katherine Burt.  Unfortunately it was not received in time and could not able to be used in the service, so I will reprint it here:

Ode to Fallen Officers
I said goodbye and went to work, like any other day
What lay ahead, I did not know - the ultimate price I would pay

I saw my shiftmates, we talked and joked, and caught up on some news
How would we know the battle ahead was one that I would lose? 

I joined the force to do some good, and help society
To serve and protect is what we do
Keep Canada strong and free

And all the times before this, I got myself out of a pinch
I didn't see this coming, fate didn't give an inch

I know that everyone's sickened
by the horrible shock of my death
I wish I could say so long, be strong, even with my dying breath

I wanted to stay and keep working
I wanted to come home again
But now I am gone and I'm passing the torch
You must take it from me and forge on

I'm mad at myself for what happened
I was supposed to be calling the shots
I was taken blind side and now it's done
Saying farewell was not in my thoughts. 

We can't change what's already happened
Call it destiny, life or bad luck
Like some Brothers and Sisters before me
I died doing something I loved

To my family, I love you and want you to know
How much your support meant to me
To my friends, I say thanks, for being the people
With whom I spent time that was free

To my kindly family of blue - oh how I'll miss you
Kindred souls are we
Fighting the good fight and going to calls
No one sees what we all have to see

My heart will always be with you
My spirit will be carried on
In Duty, with Honour, I held my head high -
Pursue justice, let no evil spawn

Katherine Burt
OPP

In memory of Senior Constable John Atkinson
Windsor Police Service
May 2006


To all of you, I again implore you to keep your heads up and take care of each other.  If a pathetic twerp like Nicky Brennan aka:  Soon to be Newest Fresh Candy On the Range, Five Packs of Smokes for a Half Hour, could do something like this, we all should be watching a little closer.  Blind side ambushes are the reality of the job, but we can still win the fight in the long run.
Be safe all of you.  As the trial unfolds, I will repost in this thread.
Thank you all again for your support.
 

Thompson_JM

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Thank you and all those like you Zip, who go out there every day on the front lines in our country and do what you can to make this part of the world a little safer for us all...

Regardless of the uniform man, Brothers in Arms.  :salute:
 

Slim

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I was fortunate enough to eb abel to attend the funeral in Windsor. I came close to tears more than once that day...

Cheers Zipper...Stay strong and alert. I'll be back soon then we can hook up and have a cold one in John's memory.

Slim


(Minor edit for PERSEC)
 

zipperhead_cop

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So now it is done.

http://www.canada.com/windsorstar/story.html?id=710e87ab-f49a-4e5b-9454-049ea8e97ae0&k=53124
Cop killer convicted of first-degree murder; Automatic life sentence

Trevor Wilhelm, Windsor Star
Published: Thursday, November 01, 2007

A court room erupted into cheers and the judge called for order Thursday, when a jury announced they found cop killer Nikkolas Brennan guilty of first degree murder.

It took seven hours for a jury to find Brennan guilty of murder and using a firearm in the commission of an indictable offence for the May 5, 2006 shooting of Const. John Atkinson.

Dozens of Atkinson's family members, friends and fellow cops broke into tears of joy when they heard the verdict.

"The jury did a good job and he got what he deserved, first degree murder," Atkinson's uncle, Chuck McDearmid, said outside court. "The last five days for the family has been sheer hell. It's just relived May 5 of last year. We're just glad that it's over with."

Brennan and Coty Defausses, later convicted of possession of crack cocaine for the purpose of trafficking, were standing outside an east end Mac's convenience store when they caught Atkinson's attention.

The 14-year veteran approached. Brennan pulled a gun and shot him in the face. Atkinson, 37, managed to fire back, but missed. He dropped dead in the street.

During his instruction to the jury, Justice Dougald McDermid said a first degree murder verdict would mean jurors believe Brennan knew Atkinson was a cop when he shot him.

McDermid will hear victim impact statements today, then he'll sentence Brennan.

First degree murder usually carries life imprisonment with no chance of parole for 25 years.

Brennan was expressionless when the verdict came. For his family, it was tears of sorrow.

"I just hope this brings some relief for the Atkinson family," was all Brennan's dad Doug could muster while leaving court.

Atkinson's widow Shelley, along with his parents Richard and Charmaine, declined to comment.

Police Chief Glenn Stannard spoke for them.

"There is still a lot of healing to go on here," said Stannard. "This is really just another step in the process for this family that has suffered tremendous tragedy."

He said the verdict was a first step for justice for Atkinson's family. The second part, he said, will be today's sentencing.

"They just want to thank members of the community for their support, the jury for all of the work they did and special attention and thanks to the men and women of the Windsor Police Service, who worked so very hard to put this case together."

Staff Sgt. William Donnelly, who was at the scene after Atkinson died, said he was also relieved for the family.

"This has been an open wound for them since it happened," he said. "It was a tragic day. This has been 18 long months, and to see it finally come to some closure for the family, I'm just relieved for the family."

The verdict was "a big relief," said Assistant Crown attorney Walter Costa. He also praised community members who helped investigators.

"This community showed a lot of courage," he said. "There were people that came forward, who assisted police in producing information. Some came to give evidence. We had one gentleman who actually attempted to assist the police in apprehending Mr. Brennan without regard to his own safety. These people are remarkable people who showed a lot of courage. This community should be proud not only of John Atkinson, but all those people who came forward to assist in this investigation."

Defence lawyer David Jacklin said he was disappointed.

"But by the same token, you could see the jury gave the matter a lot of careful consideration by the length of time they were out making their decision," he said.

If Brennan was upset, he was keeping it to himself.

"He's pretty stoic about it," said Jacklin. "He knew from the outset that a murder case is always an uphill battle. He has a lot of regrets, obviously, for the family of the deceased. He's standing up as well as can be expected."

But Jacklin skirted a question about whether Brennan would now admit he knew Atkinson was a police officer when he pulled the trigger.

"That was the matter that was an issue that was before the court," said Jacklin. "You heard his statement."


I find myself still raw, back to the afternoon in May when I was called in on my day off that we had an officer down.  As for my feeling for the ruling, my jaded self says "I should fucking hope so" and stand by for the sentencing.  This is the outcome I had hoped and prayed for, and now that it's happened I find myself thinking "well, so what".  John is still gone.  Brennan is not. 

We had to live through the trial.  Bad enough for me and my police family, I can't imagine what it was like for Shelley.  Hearing things like Brennan saying about when he killed John "that was be best thing that ever happened to me" and other crap like that.  Trying to put myself into the shoes of my brother officer that had to do the undercover cell job on Brennan, and get him to talk about what a hero he thought he was, and acting like he thought it was all so awesome, while desperately wanting to go to the next cell over and exterminate the useless mouth breather. 

Now that the case is done, I'll share a bit of what happened.

John was on his lunch break on May 5, 2006.  He was getting gas for his personal vehicle, because he was going to his daughters seventh birthday party.  After he pumped his gas, he was going in to pay and two individuals caught his attention.  As John had an almost psychic ability to know when criminality was going on, he realized that there was a drug deal in progress.  He went back to his truck, got his side arm and then approached the two.  He took out his badge and identified himself and an officer.  Without warning or provocation, Brennan took out the pistol that he had been carrying around for several days.  Many of his friends, and his family (including his own mother) knew he had a pistol and did nothing about it.  At point blank range, he shot John in the face.  It was the classic neurological kill that we all hear about.  One to the head.  It's all over.  "Shut down the electrical" they tell us. 
But no one told John.  And he was better than that. 
He was heard to scream "You aren't doing this to me!" and he drew his pistol.  He fired one shot, but because his body wasn't working the right way and his arms were mush, the ejected casing stovepiped.  He then did a clearance drill, because we found a live casing at the scene.  He fired off another shot, which also stovepiped.  About 30 seconds later, his brain was not able to ignore the fact that he had died already.  He went to the ground with his gun at hand and badge beside him. 

But it was not Brennans day to get away.  An off duty officer that was driving in his personal vehicle just happened to still be in uniform and had his hand radio with him.  He heard the "officer down" call come in, and went into the area.  As it turned out, he saw a child running with no shoes (because tying your shoe laces is so terribly uncool) in the area, and took him down.  From the point of that arrest, they were able to find the drugs that were being sold, and recovered the murder weapon. 

I still can't stop being mad about this case.  The uselessness of the killing.  How strong Shelly is and how she shames us with her strength.  All of it so avoidable and wasteful. 

As I mentioned earlier in the thread, take care of each other.  For anyone that serves in a capacity that may take your life, you know how precious it is.  Wherever you serve, whatever role you play in the machine, take some time to think about what matters.  All the dumb shit, politics, petty whining and bitching-put that crap behind you.  Any one of us may end up fighting and dying beside the other, and we need to remember what is important, and what is useless static. 

This will be a particularly poignant Remembrance Day for me, and the brothers and sisters of the WPS.  I wish all of you safe journey, and Godspeed. 

And remember this filthy little beast, because in about 25 years he will be back out on the street, and then maybe he will get the real justice he deserves. 


 

medaid

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Look at that fracking punk! Life will be too easy for him...

RIP Cst. Atkinson.
 

zipperhead_cop

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MedTech said:
Look at that fracking punk! Life will be too easy for him...

Now that the trial is done, the kid gloves will come off.  We can only hope for general population. 

Ohhh, Bruce......?
 

medaid

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indeed...GP would be good... make sure someone tells him that calling people goofs is a good thing!
 

medaid

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Future Unknown said:
How much harder would life in prison be for a man who killed a police officer.

you're being sarcastic right?
 

zipperhead_cop

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Future Unknown said:
How much harder would life in prison be for a man who killed a police officer.

It actually makes him something of a hero in criminal subculture.  However, he is just a wee bitch, and will likely be quite a desireable commodity. 
 
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Why would another criminal care? honest question not trying to stir up a hive here.
I understand criminals wanting to hurt rapists and child molesters, and the slaying of a police officer is a monstrous crime, but why would another loser in prison feel any more animosity towards the person that may have helped put them in the place they are today.
I;m he gets to spend much of his natural life in prison, i hope justice manifests itself in the form of a .22 round on his return to society.
 

Fishbone Jones

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Future Unknown said:
Why would another criminal care? honest question not trying to stir up a hive here.
I understand criminals wanting to hurt rapists and child molesters, and the slaying of a police officer is a monstrous crime, but why would another loser in prison feel any more animosity towards the person that may have helped put them in the place they are today.

I;m he gets to spend much of his natural life in prison, i hope justice manifests itself in the form of a .22 round on his return to society.

What kind of closet do you live in?
 
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